Sunday, October 30, 2011

the pumpkin process

Wow.  So much went on while I was gone tonight.  They texted me  a picture, but it wasn't the same as being here.  love you guys, Mom

what i came home to tonight

 He carved pumpkins with the kids while I was gone. Apparently Kirsten helped. This is a picture of the pumpkin  on the kitchen table.

When I came in the house tonight, late, there they were in a row, electric flickering candles inside them in the dark living room.

I was delighted.

Here's a picture with flash.  Flash is overrated in life.

 This was on my camera, oh.

 And this is my living room now, oh.  

love you kids so darn much, and your pumpkin'-carvin' father too.  Mom

Saturday, October 29, 2011

more pictures from last weekend

These are the flowers from John and Dannell's anniversary, very nice.

And here is Tim taking apart the old, cracked bed frame we replaced.   Well, we rotated beds. Dan and Alicia bought one at a garage sale, so we put that in the cabin, and moved a bed, and then discarded this old broken one.

He got it all apart and then reattached the wheels to the footboard to make one of those things like mechanics use to roll under cars. Except the wheels were too tiny and it didn't roll all that well. 

But still, nice try.

Then, madman he is, he raked leaves.  I helped him, but good gosh, he works.  Work was one of his first words and nothing has changed.  He rakes like an adult would.

These girls are working on collages, the last ones of the summer.

Here's Julia's creation.  James pronouced it a collage of randomness.  Sponge Bob and Usher.  President Obama and Dora side by side in the corner.  I have no comment, speechless.

Not content with jumping in the leaf piles, they biked through them.

Working on the deck-- after this Jay had an inventory of what he needed, so we all went to Menards.

Yes, Men's Nards.  I've heard ALL the jokes.  Anyway, this Menard's was a fair bit amazing.  It even had a grocery section with varieties of Doritos and turkey jerky, and Peachy-Os, and every kind of mixed nuts. 

What in the heck?

Not gonna lie, I liked it.  It was impressive.

Oh,and they had pre-made deck railing for $33 a section and posts for less than ten dollars.  It was all so convenient that in the morning Jay had that deck railing done before breakfast.

Oh yeah, here we are with the mechanic roller thing, wondering why it doesn't work better. TOO SMALL OF WHEELS, Buddy. That's all.

He also forgot to pack a jacket, but was willing to wear mine.  That's a warm jacket from Gap that I got at a garage sale.  I'm glad he didn't reject it as a girl's jacket.     How can anyone even tell? The lake is not a beauty contest, believe me.

Oh, and here's the best part of the whole weekend, kicked back in the living room, DVD playing at the end of the day, warm and quiet and lovely.  Sigh. Was this really only a week ago?  love, Val

a fishing trip from last weekend

Last weekend we spent four days at the cabin, finishing the deck, and closing everything up for the year.

But there was time for a little fishing.  The fish were not biting AT ALL, but they had fun trying.

Okay, here she is, so far so good.

But now, here's Heidi's dog! She jumped off the dock and snatched the bobber and swam off with it. 

Okay, that got her an escorted trip back to her parents.

There we go, the only fish caught--one perch.

Sigh. It's hard to sign off on summer, but we have to do it. love, Val

Friday, October 28, 2011

costume party at great-grandma and grandpa's house

For many, many years now, my parents have hosted this costume party for all of us, and it is seriously a blast.

Okay, Tim in full Luigi moustache

And Julia in Heidi's old ladybug costume. It's way tamer on Julia than it was on Heidi.

Jay getting help from Maria with his Power Ranger helmet

Oh, be still my heart. This is Lydia as Justin Bieber

The whole group--Maria is a toucan, and James is a Lynx basketball player

Here's us. I'm the tooth fairy, and he's an invisible villian.

Here's my mother--the witch stirs her brew.  Actually, it was sloppy joes, and they were divine.

Here's Alicia as a ninja, and pregnant ninja at that.  You don't find a lot of those. Dan was also a ninja, though the family pictures were taken with their camera, so I don't have them. b.g. is a train conductor.  That's quite appropriate, given his love of  Thomas the Train.

Here's p.j. in her tulip fairy costume--notice the shoes.  Every litlte girl could use green velvet shoes with turned up toes.

Kirsten told us she was Black Swan. I have no idea what that is, but she looked good.

Oh yeah, attacking the old video games--See Dannell's pants? She was Smarty Pants for a reason.

Here's me and my Sweetie. He ate a lot of chocolate and then wanted me to lick the rest off his fingers, and he insistently put them in my face.  Okay, fine.  Later I heard he threw up last week.  I'm livin' so dangerously, sucking chocolate off the fingers of a Sweetie who barfed.  (unh.)

Here they're playing in the kitchen, attempting to share.

The video games in the storage room--note the intensity of concentration.

Oh, but here we begin the Mummy Wrap Game.   There were many winners and no losers.

And the whole basement was effectively tee-peed, but we cleaned it all up.

Yes, Pin the Tail on the Cat.  We made this thing back in  2002, and my mom faithfully saves it in the bathroom closet so we can tape it on the door every year.   Everybody won, in case you're wondering. We wound them up, blindfolded, six times and pointed them toward the door, where they staggered and felt the cat over carefully.

YAY! You did it!

Phones now are way more fascinating than they ever were.  Mines's still fairly dull, actually.  I'm proud I can even text and email photos.
Yes, and crafts.  We had those too.

And ended with birthdays and cake and  it was a great night.

Mom? Dad? Thank you for doing this every year. The excitement around this house the last couple days was pretty intense. The kids were ready to put on costumes at 2:30.

The thing that had me laughing my heart out tonight was my brother's child, my own godson, asking if there was any limit on the number of little weenies allowed to any one person.

We made four pans and it's this: Little weenies, wrapped in bits of crescent dough and baked for about 15 minutes.

They are delicious, a feast.

Jay and I have even brought them as an appetizer to grown up dinner parties and people descend upon them, but nobody has ever asked the legal limit on them except my brother's child.

Eat up, Buddy.

What a great night. love, Val