Halloween is my favorite. Perhaps it is the idea of looting my kids’ bag of treats once they are sleeping snuggly in their beds. Or maybe the fun of being allowed to dress up and not be thought odd. This year was no exception.
Corinne decided she wanted to be a vampire. I decided I wanted to be a cool mom so I bought face paint. When she came out from the bathroom where I painted her face, Ethan screamed and ran away crying. That’s how I knew she looked awesome!
Mason found this alligator/dinosaur/hilarious costume at a second hand kids’ clothing store. Nevermind that it was a smidge too small. He HAD to have it! When I saw him in it, I knew I would oblige.
Ethan was determined to wear the bumble bee costume from our box in the basement. The jacket was so small that if we put the hood up, the jacket went halfway up his back. In true stubborn form, he could not be persuaded otherwise. That costume may need to go missing before next year rolls around.
The kids get all wound up when they get to wear their costumes at school. They have a parade around the playground just like they did when I was a kid. Then you go back to the classroom for a party.
Apparently, alligators REALLY like school.
We have made it a tradition to go to the Pumpkin Festival (Pumpkin Show to the locals) every year in Circleville, Ohio. Here are the munchkins in front of this year’s winner for largest pumpkin:
I can’t even get watermelon to grow in my garden! But I digress… It was fun for all!
The kids picked out pumpkins to carve…
…and pumpkins to sleep with.
We visited the apple orchard in my hometown to get some cider. The kids got all excited over these cheesy photo ops so I jumped at the chance to take pictures that will embarrass them in their teen years.
This next one is especially awesome.
I love fall! And, I love my kids.
We are lucky enough to live in Dublin which is pretty big into public art. One of these artpieces is near our home. We call it The Corn. There are 109 ears of cement corn.
The kids love to run around between the rows. We went in the fall to play hide and go seek.
Mason is trying his best to be one with the corn and disappear. Ethan…not so much.
Next to the cornfield is a row of trees that drop huge “things.” The kids say they are monkey brains. Apparently, they are called Osage Oranges. Doesn’t look like an orange I’d want to eat! I have seen them elsewhere in Dublin, too. One fell and hit the top of the van once while I was driving. It scared me to death!
As weird as the fruit is, the trees sure are fun to climb on.
We played until the sun went down and the kids pooped out. FYI: The plaque Mason is sitting on talks about how Sam Frantz came up with some form of hybrid corn and used to farm the land where the cement corn is now. The road next to the corn is Frantz Road. It’s all making sense now. See why it’s good to read those little markers?
Here is another example of art in Dublin: Bunny Hill
In summer, we play in the fountains and waterfall underneath. In winter, the kids love to sled ride down the back. The bunnies have recycled pieces of trash in them. Some of our favorites are: a blowdryer, care bear toy, HUGE scissors, coins, etc.
So you decide, art or playground?
It was a challenge to teach Corinne to ride her bike. I was not looking forward to having Mason learn. To my surprise, he took off the training wheels himself and just went for it. There were a few runs where he was scared, but that didn’t last long.
Hopefully Ethan will be just as easy. Shouldn’t be a problem since the kid is FEARLESS!
You all know how crazy I am for the dentist. Dental hygiene is my calling in life! I’m good at it. Naturally, I want the kids to enjoy going. When Ethan turned 3 last summer, I was a bit skeptical that it would be a good experience so I waited until early fall.
The chair just swallowed him up. He’s so little!
The sunglasses were a hit!
I still go to the office I worked for during the majority of my career to date. They are like family to me and my kids and right around the corner. Ethan wasn’t so sure when my friend came in to clean his teeth. He wouldn’t take his eyes off her in case she decided to try something…
…but he did great! No cavities!
We started a new rotation in our family: Date Night. We picked Fridays. Corinne, being the first child, gets the first Friday of the month. Mason the second, Ethan the third, Tony and I the fourth and should there be a fifth Friday, we go on a family date. The child picks a parent and an activity. We all enjoy it so far. It gives each kid a chance to have some one-on-one time with a parent and do something that we would normally say no to. They usually pick dinner, going to an arcade, playing with animals at the pet store, a movie, etc.
One of our family dates was to play putt putt. I really don’t like putt putt. REALLY don’t like it. Somehow being with the kids made it more fun. Taking along the Woolfs made it super fun.
Mason took the whole thing very seriously. I love his sunglasses on top of his head.
Tony is hoping to instill a love of the sport so that he finally has someone to golf with down the road.
The whole lot of us
Steph makes everything more fun. I love that she loves my kids.
This month doesn’t have a 5th Friday for us to go somewhere all together. The kids are a bit sad about that, and that makes me happy. They want us to be together. I think the plan is working.
The kids spent lots of time with lots of family this summer. The Rices had them in Cleveland for a week of fun. A family friend let them borrow a cool blow-up waterslide. The kids had a blast!
Tony’s parents took them camping at the John Johnson farm in Hiram, Ohio. This is no small feat. Kids are hard to entertain when it is hot and there are no video games. Gotta give my inlaws some credit for this trip.
My parents also took them camping. It was the opposite experience: freezing cold and rainy. Bet you can’t tell from these pictures. I don’t know how they swam. I was in a coat watching from shore.
These pictures are more accurate. I like how Mason looks as though he is basking in the sun when nothing could be further from the truth.
My parents were troopers. I thought they would head home early, but they stuck it out!
So I know Ethan is 3 1/2 now but better late than never. This kid never ceases to amaze me. He is silly and crazy and snuggly! When he smiles, he eyes squint up. It’s so adorable that I have to kiss him all over his face.
Ethan was really into Mickey Mouse and the Mickey Mouse Clubhouse show this summer. He picked a brown Toodles cake since brown was his favorite color at the time. Easy enough for me!
He really didn’t understand presents at this point. By Christmas, Ethan had it all figured out and didn’t need help from Mason.
I love Ethan! He makes my days more interesting and definitely keeps me on my toes. Can’t imagine my life without him!
Is this thing on? Anybody out there?
We did lots of playing over the summer: swings, zoo, socials, slip n’ slide, visiting grandparents, etc. Here’s a quick overview:
Ethan learned out to swing on a big boy swing…
..and became friends with a snake.
Mason had fun showing Ethan how to swing…
…and playing T-ball.
Corinne kept trying new things…
…and making us proud.
It’s always fun to have cousins to play with outside until you are caked with dirt.