Tuesday, November 17, 2009


I can't believe she did it again! Last Thursday, while I was trying to get Kristen to sleep for her nap, Meghan decided to give herself another haircut! (Although I have to say in her defense that I am largely to blame and feel like I must be the world's worst mother.) She had apparently, unbeknownst to me, spilled orange juice in her hair earlier that morning, and when it dried, it became rather stiff and crunchy, which is why, she explained, she was trying to cut it out! How could I have not known that my child was walking around with sticky dried juice hair?! Had I washed it promptly, she never would have taken the scissors to it! Luckily, one of my oldest friends—who just happens to be a beautician!—called that very afternoon to see if she and her darling infant son and one of our other dear mutual friends could stop by for a visit! I know this couldn't have been a mere coincidence; I've heard the term "God-incidence" and this was surely one of those cases! Jamie was truly a Godsend that day! I'm sure you can see from the "before" photos that this job was clearly beyond my limited scope of ability. Meghan sure looks cute now with her super short 'do, though, and she has promised that she will not cut her hair again!

Our American Heritage Girl

Caitlyn was so excited to be able to participate in our local Veteran's Day parade last week with her American Heritage Girls troop! We arrived early to help decorate the float and then waited for nearly an hour to actually start moving, but it was definitely worth it! Darren didn't have to work that day so he and the other children parked themselves along the parade route (a loop in the old down town district) to watch us pass by.

Here she is before we began. Such a darling! I love this photo!

Caitlyn is front and center here with the rest of her troop, including some of the leaders, on their float.

Proudly displaying a flag and the banner she made that morning.

"HI, DAD!"

The best part of the parade was when Caitlyn had her turn to carry the flag!

And, it doesn't really fit here, but I realized tonight that I never posted this super cute photo of Cait at her AHG joining ceremony back in October! She is absolutely loving American Heritage Girls and, in her very small Pathfinders group of Kindergarten age girls, has made two very dear little friends. We're really looking forward to the rest of the year's fun activities!

Monday, November 09, 2009

Fall Family Fun

I finally had some free time this afternoon to sort through some of our recent photos, and I know my mom will be happy to see that I'm finally posting a few here! I thought about trying to give them all their own tidy little post, but that just takes too much work. ;)

So, here we have our annual trip to the pumpkin patch on the beautiful weekend before Halloween. We had so much fun! I love watching my kids in the pumpkin patch. Even Kristen was toddling all over the place picking up tiny pumpkins, and even cuter, the big kids were doing the same thing--to give to her! Of course, no visit is complete without cotton candy and ice cold lemonade, both of which we had in abundance. :)

On Halloween day, we carved our pumpkins and celebrated the first birthday of our own little black kitty! She was just a tiny little stray fluff of a kitten when our neighbors rescued her last year, and, figuring she was about six weeks old at that time, we counted back on the calendar and estimated that she must have been born right around Halloween! So that has become her birthday; appropriate, I think! :)

Trick-or-treating was so much fun this year. So many of our neighbors were set up in their driveways handing out candy and visiting with everybody who came by, and it just felt so friendly! Some people really went to great lengths to provide fun for the kids; one family down our street was even passing out bags of warm, fresh popcorn from a big theater style popper they had set up in their garage! Kristen and I came home after a while to pass out our own candy, but the big kids enjoyed staying out with Daddy to visit more of the neighborhood!

This past weekend we were happy to attend the annual Renaissance Faire at the park. Some things had changed; my brother wasn't performing this year, and Clan Tynker was noticeably absent. (Although there was the new addition of a wine garden! Except we didn't have a chance to visit. Next year, for sure!) Still, we had a great time browsing the vendor's booths, playing in the children's realm, eating yummy food, feeding the ducks, and, of course, ending with a canoe ride! This year was Darren's turn; I've ridden with the children the past two years and figured he was finally due for a little fun of his own. :) After about four hours, though, we (meaning "me" more than the others) were finally ready to head home!

I feel like time is swiftly marching forward, now. School is going well with the kids, extracurricular activities are keeping us plenty busy, Darren and I have some home organization projects under way, and my mom will be visiting the first two weeks of December! I can't wait to see her again! In the meantime, mom, I hope you enjoy the photos. ;)

Friday, November 06, 2009

Along the Alphabet Path: Weeks "E" and "F"

We're still enjoying our journey along the alphabet path, but I have to admit that I've gotten lazy about photo-documenting every activity we do! And, as my pregnancy progresses, it's also true that much of what we do is simply piling together on the couch in the living room with appropriate books to read aloud. We're learning so much this way, though, and it really is fun. And I love that we're finally putting to good use all the wonderful books we've accumulated over the past few years!

We'll be starting "G" week on Monday, so I wanted to post a quick update about our "E" and "F" weeks so I'll at least feel a little more caught up! ;)

Let's see...it's been a while now, but "E" week was for Eyebright and St. Elizabeth Ann Seton, planet Earth, and Explorers. Books we used included Science 2 for Young Catholics, Science 2 for Little Folks, The Magic School Bus Inside the Earth, and Around the World in a Hundred Years. OH! And would you believe that one day that week it actually snowed here?! So we took the opportunity to read about Eskimos in Mama, Do You Love Me?, The Three Snow Bears, and The Eye of the Needle (which had us all in stitches...no pun intended!).

Tea time included Elephant story books, Elephant Ears from a little gem of a book called Alpha-Bakery Children's Cookbook, and Eggnog! I also helped the children with a cute little elephant craft, which we all really enjoyed!

This week was "F" week, for Fuschia and St. Francis, Flowers, Fish, and Food chains. Books we read included Flowers, The Flower Alphabet Book, Miss Rumphius, My Visit to the Aquarium, A Fish Hatches, The Freshwater Alphabet Book, Who Eats What?, and The Magic School Bus Gets Eaten. We greatly enjoyed revisiting the flowers that Darren helped the children preserve on our camping trip back in September, and we did a couple of fun little crafts including foil fish and a family tree!

And, I almost forgot: tea time! "F" week's treat was delicious Fudge Brownies (from the above mentioned cookbook) and Fountain Classics! Yum! I think that tea time treats may be my very favorite part of our alphabet path. :)