Sunday, October 31, 2010

Treated OUT

zOMG the boys got SO MUCH CANDY! It may not look like that much in the above photo, but that's only because Harry hadn't dumped his out yet.
We tried ringing a few doorbells in our 'hood, but nobody answered-- not even the people we could see sitting at their kitchen tables WITH THEIR PORCH LIGHTS ON.

So we headed out with some friends of ours in a gorgeous neighborhood near their house.

And the kids had a great time, but I couldn't shake off the feeling that I was a huge poser T-o-Ting where I don't live because my neighbors are meanies. It made me wish we were renting our house instead of owning it so we could move to a family friendly neighborhood already.

I remember how happy and proud we were when we bought this place, but we didn't think that we'd still be here more than 3 and a half years later. We figured we would have way outgrown the place by now. And we have. But here we sit.

Even though I seriously love candy, Halloween stirs up my jealousy like no other because it's all about the one thing we really don't have-- a neighborhood. This is an especially big bummer in this town where people are so loyal to their neighborhoods they name them and very seriously refer to them by name.

And really, I am just being a baby. Because my chocolate stained babies had a great time.

Saturday, October 30, 2010


This town makes a bigger deal out of Halloween than it does Christmas. I totally love it.

I am like the only parent I know who doesn't give a shit how much candy her kids eat on Halloween (because the way I see it, if you are concerned about your kids' diet 364 days a year, this day they can eat chocolate till they barf and you're golden) , so we've even already been Trick-or-Treating. All of our town's schools were closed for parent teacher conferences on Friday (even the preschools-- and my conferences were adorable), and downtown businesses had T-o-Ting all afternoon. Score!

Ben got to take the kids to school for their Halloween parades and class breakfasts. Here they are sans dino tops

Harry showing his stuff

School Jack, like real Jack only quieter

Today Harry even got to go to a costume birthday party

Tomorrow, we T-o-T for real, so I'll have many more pictures, I'm sure.

Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Loooooooong day

It probably felt like such a long day because we didn't really go anywhere. Well, we went to swim lessons, where Harry learned how to tread water. Sort of. He doesn't really get the tread part, so I kept thinking I was going to have to jump in and save him, although his teacher didn't look concerned.

We came home around 11, and I spent the rest of the day making these for the kids' halloween parties tomorrow-- that Ben has to go to because they both are happening during my class.

No cupcakes for the snowflakes, so I made organic pumpkin(for Jack) and apple (for Harry) muffins with carrot hair, raisin eyes, and grape noses. I kind of screwed Jack's up and waited too long to add facial features, so I tried to stick the eyes on with cream cheese. Kind of gross.

Don't let this picture fool you. They aren't necessarily that sweet. Jack was so freaking tired today because he naps at school but not at home, purposely-- he never sleeps well when he's had multiple naps in a row, and our Tuesday nights are sometimes rough, which bleeds over into our Wednesdays. He fell apart pretty much constantly after 3 pm while I tried to dig myself out from under a pile of midterm exams and essays (not successful).

Then he actually fell asleep while eating his dinner and roused himself valiantly to demand some Joe-Joes when I was just done with the dishes.

And now, my friends, I am going to read Harry a bedtime story and have some grilled chicken salad and wine with Ben-- a couch date on this blustery Wednesday night.

Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Hey remember that picture-a-day thing?

Well, we did it almost. I mean I realize we still have to finish this month and skate through November and December (AKA the busiest months of the YEAR), but you guys? Almost everyday we remembered to take a picture. And the days we didn't take a family picture, we still took a snap of some random thing. But this effort has not been flawless. There have been some serious outtakes.

Like this one where my fat head is blocking a child

Or this one where Harry's fat head is doing the blocking

Or these.

We have lots of nearly headless breakfast shots, too.

I am actually wondering what the heck to DO with harry Times 365 after this year. Make it into a book? Take a picture a day in 2011? Not sure. Anybody done the blog-to-book thing? How did it work and what service did you use?

Monday, October 25, 2010

Raising Hell at Church

I know I said I'd show you some fluffy dinosaurs, but I only have one crappy picture of one fluffy dinosaur:

Jack did not want to even go to church, much less wear his costume. So. Yes. I am the monster who leaves her screaming baby at the nursery. Harry walked so slowly in the costume parade that he actually got lost and came shuffling back into the auditorium (when the rest of the parade went outside to get to the nursery school wing of the building.) Harry. He is never in a hurry.

We spent yesterday at our nephew Jacob's baptism. He's pretty adorable, huh?

I was mildly afraid that someone was going to try to go swimming in the holy water hot tub, but they all just blessed the baby, which was pretty cute. Also pretty wet.

I spent a lot of time walking around the grounds with Jack

We checked out the cute preschool wing where the kids had construction paper witches, ghosts, and Frankensteins on the wall. For a minute, it made me wish my kids made "normal" art at school. Since it's an art-based school, they do really elaborate projects-- and call them installations-- and have trained art teachers and don't really go for the everybody-follow-directions-and-cut-the-same-stuff-out philosophy. But damn those typical school crafts are cute. Maybe we'll make them at home this week.

I brought a along a purse full of candy, and the kids devoured it. They spent most of the ceremony engaging in some grandparent-approved pew hijinks.

Check this out: Ben's dad is covered up in kids

On my exploration of the church with Jack, I stumbled upon an entire table full of pro-life abortion literature, including some pamphlets for a campaign I am writing an article about. It was seriously my lucky day. I didn't have my bag when Jack and I were walking, so I just snapped a furtive picture of some bumper stickers.

Then when we were leaving, I ducked back inside and filled my bag with one of everything on the table. You should have seen the quizzical looks I got from fellow church-goers. Maybe this was just the inspiration I needed to get my scholarly shit back together.
On the ride home, both boys ate Halloween treats from their grandparents.

Harry promptly passed out

Jack removed his footwear

And spent the next 2 hours removing lint from between his toes.

He was pretty intense about it. Maybe it is his spiritual practice. Who am I to judge?

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Costume change

I bought a Jack a fluffy baby dinosaur costume from Gymboree the day I ordered Harry's no-longer-a-cute-little-baby Batman costume online. I was so bummed at the years of not-cuet costumes stretching before me that I packed Jack into the car and set out to find a Halloween get-up that would make him look like a living stuffed animal for one more year.

When we got home and tried on the costume, I noticed that the sleeves were a little short. Last year, Jack had to be a last-minute hand-me-down monkey because he outgrew his Woody costume between its purchase and the big day, so I ordered an extra dinosaur costume in the next size up, just in case the same thing happened this year.

The costumes came; Harry and Jack modeled Batman and a fluffy dinosaur respectively, and all was good.

Then, last week, the boys' preschool sent a note home reminding us of the Halloween parade next week and telling us that costumes with masks were prohibited because some kids are scared of masks. Harry freaked the freak out because his Batman costume, as you can see, has a mask.

I pulled out the bigger Gymbo dinosaur, and he tried it on. It's a little tight, which is awesome, and Harry gets red and sweaty really easily, so he was flushed within seconds-- also awesome in a funny/cute way. Jack tried his costume on, and I had 2 living plush doll children. It was great.
Until last night, when we were getting ready to get ready for a family Halloween party at the YMCA. Ben suggested that we each dress as a member of the Village People which would have been fantastic, but Harry wanted to wear his Batman costume. So Jack demanded, "Me be Batman too," and maybe it was his correct use of verbage, but being the wasteful sucker I sometimes am, I ran out and got him a teeny Batman costume, too.
Voila! Two small Batmen

Harry and Jack spent the whole night in line for the bouncy house--they bounced themselves silly and then ran to the end of the line to bounce again.

Except Jack couldn't go by himself, so my brother "had" to bounce with him (he said it smelled in there, but we think he secretly loved it).

Every time I thought I misplaced Harry, I'd find him in line for the bouncy

That's also where we could find Ben

Ben and I are both sick as hell with a terrible cold that the boys probably gave us. Look at me-- I have on eye makeup but you can't see it because the skin around my eyes puffed up and ate it. Poor Ben has to judge a speech tournament today-- he weakly dialed and texted all night looking for a replacement, but no dice. And we have to take the kids to a costume parade at church tonight (on a side note: it feels so wrong to me to call it church because that term denotes Christianity. Many UU congregations reject the church label because it is exclusive, but there's not another good, generic word to use. People in our society (that's what it's called technically here) say "the meeting house," so I guess I could use that term). Anyway, we're sick and here we are:

I love this picture-- he totally looks like Batman climbing a wall (or maybe Spiderman in a bat costume)

They even got to wear their Batman wellies.

The party ended with a kiddie magician. He was funny, and the kids all were amazed and screamed and laughed and cheered-- a great show. The only problem? The other adults! A very large man with a very large wet cough hacked all over Ben's shoulder and neck, and the large man's large son was practically on Ben's lap by the end of the show. Then some lady came and crouched practically on top of me, holding an orange balloon that she must have stolen from the stairwell (WTF lady?) right in front of my damn head. Here I am making my best WTF? face:

Here you see Jack beginning to lose his shit because he wanted a lollipop and all I had was a box of raisins (also it was 8, and he goes to bed at 7 and here we were all dressed up and far from the bathtub anhour after the routine should have commenced)

Harry and Jack, though, loved the show and sat nicely together in front for at last most of the time

I'll keep you posted-- I should have pictures of some fluffy dinosaurs at the UU parade tonight.