Monday, November 30, 2009

Thanksgiving 2009

I was so sad to send everyone back to school and work today! We had a wonderful 5 days off together. And a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday. And a lot to be thankful for!

Last year Thanksgiving was... a learning experience. It started with Matt and I taking a loooong walk and then relaxing and watching the parade. I didn't even start cooking till 1:00! And then I thought I would make a real "home cooked" spread that everyone would love... ha! I made everything from scratch, from the cranberries to the cornbread for my cornbread stuffing! Needless to say we ate very late, no one, especially not the children, was too impressed by all of my home made endeavors, and I was exhausted (and maybe a little bit cranky).

Christmas dinner cooking was better. I enlisted more help and started earlier.

But this year, this year, I figured it out! I organized and had written down all my dishes and how long they needed the stove, oven, and prep. I did what my mama always did and baked my pies on Wednesday. I also made my Pink Fluff - that I realized the kids don't like because as Christian put it "It has that chunky sour cream stuff in it!" (cottage cheese!) - and my super cute cheeseball that Lana taught us to make, which were the only other things I could prep early.

I casually worked on dinner all day. Matt fried our turkey again, he's getting to be a pro! We realized that he has fried turkeys in New Mexico, Texas, Colorado, California, Washington, and now Maryland. We're such globe trotters! ;)

That's some hot oil!

That morning the ward had a Turkey Bowl at the park down the street from us, so we went and checked that out. I took some pictures and then Addie and I came home. Matt and the big kids had fun playing football and getting some exercise.

The kid game.

Isn't that fog awesome?!

My manly man!

Addie was such a good girl while everyone was out! She loves to sit on her little bench and read to all her babies. She's such a little mama!

We had invited friends to come over for pies at 6:00, so we had a goal to eat by 3:00. After some last minute puttering around we sat down to eat at exactly 3:10. :) Everyone pitched in and everything was put away and clean by 5:00. No naps were to be had (except little Addie), but it was still a lovely day!

By 6:30 we had a house full of wonderful friends. Of course I didn't think to get the camera out! We had at least 15 pies, it was wonderful and delicious! Everyone left by 8:30, the kids disappeared, Christian to spend the night at Ryans house, Alexis and Robin to our basement, Matt put Addie to bed and I tidied one more time, and then it was time to rest and watch Matt Lauers special. Such a wonderful day!

Saturday, November 28, 2009

We're making salad over here!

This week she's the size of a rutabaga. 

She's been a poppy seed, sesame seed, lentil bean, blueberry, kidney bean, grape, kumquat, 
(we had fun saying that all week!) 
fig, lime, shrimp, lemon, apple, avocado, turnip, bell pepper, heirloom tomato, banana, carrot, spaghetti squash, mango, and an ear of corn.

Sounds more like a salad bar than a baby, but it's fun to know how big she is! 

5/8 of the way there!

(but who's counting?!)

Friday, November 27, 2009

Living in an Amish paradise

We live in Amish country out here and I love it! I am still amazed when I am driving along and pass an Amish wagon! We've got a couple Amish farms right here in our town and many more within a short drive away. I get excited when I see them at the store or the doctors office and I would love, love, love to make friends with some!

They make delicious baked goods and jams that they sell at farmers markets or in little stores they own. All summer they would take their wagons or vans (some have vans or trucks for work) and park them on the side of the road and sell their fruits and veggies, all organic and delicious! The Maryland sweet corn is seriously the best I've ever had - it doesn't even need to be boiled, it's that good!

They also make the best furniture, or so I hear. And that's why all I want for Christmas are two black, Amish made rocking chairs for my front porch. (feel free to pass on this message to Matt, I know I have!)

I did a little bit of google research to find out a little about our technology shunning neighbors and found out that they don't like to have their pictures taken. One website said it has to do with the 2nd of the 10 Commandments and graven images. I don't know if that's why or not, but I respect that and have not taken any pictures of the actual people. But I hear their wagons and goods are fair game. :)

Sharing the road and the rain.

Up close.

Cute little Amish market. They sell fresh fruits and veggies, canned fruits, veggies, and jams, baked goods, cheeses and butters, aprons, and cookbooks.
I was seriously tempted to buy an apron!

But I settled for these. :)
And while I would love to say I took them home and shared (which was my intention all along), I'm sorry to say they didn't last past our errands and playgroup that day. :(
The baby was hungry!

Hopefully our next visitors can rock on our front porch and enjoy the fine Amish workmanship with us. :)

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

5 days!

We just got back from the doctor and they "officially" unofficially moved our due date up to what was shown in our latest sonogram. :) They don't "officially" change it, but she's measuring big (notice how I said "she" and not "me"!) and has been for awhile.

I know the due date is just a goal. Alexis was 12 days early. Christian was 8 days early. And little Addie was 10 days late! But it's nice to have a little bit of a closer goal!

March 13th here we come!

Friday, November 20, 2009

My Angel...

Christian finished his baseball season playing for the Angels a few weeks ago. So it seems like it's just about time to blog about it. :)

He did an awesome job! He played mostly 3rd base, but sometimes outfield, and one time he pitched. He did such a good job pitching but there was drama! It was one of those times that as a mother I wanted to go let 'er rip on those coaches! The coaches of the team we played were making a huge deal about where the pitcher should stand. Their pitcher stood on the marker closest to the batter. Then when Christian went to pitch, they made him stand at the marker furthest from the batter. It was farther enough that it strained his arm quickly and as he stepped forward to pitch he was tripping over the other marker. When our coaches said that wasn't right the other coaches actually went out and measured the field! Twice! As if it really matters that much in Little League! And as it turns out, they were wrong. Then the other players were heckling. :( After that Christian was done and he never wanted to pitch again. Maybe next season.

Preparing for the pitch...

Isn't he sooo cute?!

Being sweet to his baby sister who always wants in on the action!

Deep concentration...

We had so much fun watching him grow as he played. Even on the nights that we froze! I'm thinking Santa might be bringing some fun baseball equipment and he might have an even better season in the Spring! ;)

We love our handsome young man!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Happy Halloween!

For Halloween I really wanted all of us to dress up around a theme. Alexis and Christian quickly vetoed that idea though. So I figured at least Addie, Matt, and I could do something cute.

Christian didn't want to dress up at all, he's too cool you know. I told him that was fine but that he wouldn't be able to go Trick-or-Treating unless he dressed up and ALL the kids in the neighborhood had planned to go together. So he relented, but only to be a gangsta (again). I guess I don't mind too much because it was cheap and easy.

Alexis and her best bud Robin decided to be Thing 1 and Thing 2. It's a good thing Robin's mom is super crafty otherwise Lex would have had a piece of paper that said Thing 1 taped to her red shirt. Jana did an awesome job and the girls looked super cute! They decided not to go with the cute blue wigs though, I'm sure I don't know why!

I tried and tried to scan pictures of Alexis' and Robin as Thing 1 and 2, and some of all the neighborhood kids that Jana had taken, but no luck! Maybe I can figure it out and post them later. :) Cause I think this post is late enough!  

But here are our 3 little angels. So hard to get a good picture of all 3! Especially when 2 of the 3 are ready to run!

For Matt, Addie, and I, I debated for awhile. I finally settled on Peter Pan characters. Matt's got a thing for pirates so I figured a Captain Hook costume would be useful and not too difficult. Addie was an adorable Tinkerbell. And I planned on being Mr. Smee. I figured that would be easy and I've got the big belly for it! Then at the last minute I kinda wanted to be Wendy instead, but alas, I can't sew and the only Wendy costumes they sell are Sexy Wendy! That obviously wasn't gonna happen, so Mr. Smee I was!

This was about how well Addie did Trick-or-Treating. She wasn't super into it. Now the candy, that was another story. Let's just say she's got a sweet tooth that her brother and sister are only to happy to oblige.

Hope your Halloween was a happy (and spooky!) one!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Pumpkin Patch

I realize I'm about 2 weeks (or more) late on all my posts, but I am trying to get back on track. We had a wonderfully full weekend and getting going on another wonderfully busy week.

Every year we try to go to a Pumpkin Patch and Corn Maze. This year we waited until Halloween day. Unfortunately it had been raining up until Halloween day and everything was closed except for the little section where we could buy pumpkins. :(

We did get some cute pictures though.
Hugging Dora.

Addie meandering by herself.

This was right before she fell backwards, between the rails of the wheelbarrow. As if that wasn't funny enough, then the pumpkin rolled on her!
She was fine and we were hysterical.
Hysterically laughing that is. :)

We got to see a few pumpkins at least. Alexis had come earlier with our neighbors, we were supposed to meet her there but they had already left because it was closed. :(

One of the few pictures Christian would pose for.
Now I know the preponderance of my pictures feature Addie front and center, but if anyone has any ideas on how to get teens and pre-teens to pose for pictures willinglly I would love to get more pictures of our big babies!!!

Getting a ride from dad.

Just look at that gorgeous sky!
The weather was sooo humid! It was downright warm!

This was the extent of our pumpkin carving. I loved that Addie just sat there and watched.
She loves being outside!
Please ignore Matt's sandals and socks.
I know I do.

Then she heard a ruckus coming down the street and went to check it out.
This is a familiar scene on Pensive Street.
She loves to hang out with the big girls!

Next up...

costumes and trick-or-treating!

We've been a-workin'!

Just a few things we've been up to over here...

So anyone that knows me knows that I am not very crafty! I saw this at my friend Lana's house and thought it looked cute and easy and I have tons of old picture frames I was gonna get rid of. So here's what I came up with.

Pretty cute, right?!

Then I was wanting a nice Autumn wreath for our door. Matt convinced me that we could make one. It took a long time, but I finally finished it!
I realize it's not a big deal for some, but this is huge for my not-so-crafty self!

We also spent a whole Saturday cleaning out our garage. I gave Matt the credit card and sent him to Lowes to pick up any organizational stuff his little heart wanted. I think he did an awesome job!

This was all Matt's vision!

And we can finally park both cars in the garage again!


And it only took 6 months!

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Sleepy Hollow

In the middle of October we took advantage of a long weekend to go up to Sleepy Hollow, New York to enjoy some Halloween spirit! It was freezing and drizzly but we had an amazing time!

The foliage was beautiful! I took tons of pictures on the drive up but decided to spare you on the blog. But here's a little sampling. This is right outside our hotel.

They have annual festivities that we went to. On Friday night was the Great Jack-0-lantern Blaze that we forgot to take our camera to. There were thousands of hand carved jack-o-lanterns all displayed. It was so cool! Here's a picture I found online just to give an example.

On Saturday morning we headed out to another old estate for the Legend festivities. They had storytellers, old activities, and spooky surroundings. And it was beautiful!

Since it was so freezing the kids got to bundle up and they looked so cute! Poor Christian though. I grabbed his ski jacket from last year as we were leaving, even though he swore he wouldn't need a coat. When we got to Sleepy Hollow it was freezing so I gave him his coat, only it was about 2 sizes too small! The sleeves went up to his elbows! So he toughed it out all weekend in just his hoodie. Total man though, he swore he wasn't cold!

That's the old Sleepy Hollow church and cemetery behind us.

These stilts were the hit! Matt and the kids were ready to make some as soon as we got home! And they all did awesome on them!

I declined the offer to try them out. I learned my lesson when I was pregnant with Addie and accepted a ride on Christian's bike pegs. Balance isn't as good when you've got a big belly!

Addie is such an animal lover! She loved seeing the cows, chickens, goats, and cats running around.

Christian and Addie doing some old fashioned bowling.

This was the am story teller. We all loved listening to her spooky stories, even Addie! Can you see her back there on the stage?!

In between the morning and evening activities we walked over to the old cemetery. Matt and the kids had fun scaring each other. It was hard to try to convince the kids to be respectful when Matt was acting like the biggest kid of them all!

We ate at some super cute diners!

That evening after we listened to some more of Sleepy Hollows old legends we walked around and got to meet them. Here is the White Lady of Raven Rock. She froze to death waiting for her beloved and now wanders around calling for him.

We also got to see the Headless Horseman ride and some witches and old soldiers. It was very fun and very cold! And most of our pictures didn't turn out cause I'm still not great at taking pics in the dark!

The next day as we were driving home we decided to take a quick driving tour of Manhattan. Here are some pictures of the Manhattan temple that Lex wants to get married in. We can't wait to go inside! If you didn't know what you were looking for you would probably just drive on by and never notice it!

And there were people driving up in cabs to go to church on the first floors.
Can you imagine?!

Sleepy Hollow was tons of fun and we highly recommend it!