Wednesday, October 28, 2009

And the Halloween Winners are . . .

Nope - The Super Sapphires were hoping for the win but not this year, poor Greg was devastated (They don't look like they're having any fun do they?)
The Orange County Choppers (OCC) came in a close 2nd place.  They opted to skip 2 locations - uhoh - someday Matt & Emily will win!  They needed Kim & Lane who got sick at the last minute.

My favorite costumes were The Gold Diggers, but they still weren't the winners. They came in with a great prank though(keep reading).
The Scarlet Scarfaces were tough competition but better luck next year!
And the winners are . . . The Emerald Enemies!  Kyndra & John led out two "greenies" no pun intended.  This was the first year for Steve & Kaya and Marty & Emily.  They had no trouble catching up with the rules & race.  No one could keep up with their speed - we won't mention who was driving on their team but check out the speedometer!
This year we threw a new twist into our party.  We encouraged "pre-game" pranks.  My sister, Maria gave us the idea to have only 3 rules:  they had to be harmless, had to involve at least 3 teammates, and they had to send visual proof to my email before the party began.  They were so creative & mostly non-harmful (at least to each other, I can't say the animals would agree!)  Here are some of the highlights.

The Super Sapphires Sassy Wives got together and made home made oreo cookies with a twist.  No yummy cream cheese middle - oh no - they filled them with toothpaste tinted orange instead.  Then they wrapped them up cute with a "You've been Spooked" card and dropped them off to opposing teams. 

They also snuck into Marty & Emily's house to rearrange the furniture.  I've always wanted a couch in my kitchen, how about you?

"The Gold Diggers" spray painted John & Kyndra's horse.  Wyatt (their kindergartner) is worried it won't ever come off.
Before you start shedding tears for "The Emerald Enemies" here's proof they deserved it all.  They stuffed mailboxes with shredded paper, toilet paper, & taped them shut.  They also "redecorated" lawns, brought their own pumpkins to smash on opposing teams steps, forked lawns, and dropped off calf on Greg & Gwen's front porch.
Here is a picture of the "OCC" planting a "Monica for Mayor" sign in her front yard.  We do need good leaders wouldn't you agree?

The Scarlet Scarfaces also had to do their damage by depositing a dead mouse in a bag that they lovingly set atop a pile of pumpkins.  So the pumpkins blocked the doorway of an opposing team.

We thought the party was just great this year!  I loved having the pix to watch while we ate pizza back at the Fehringer's cellar.  Daren & Nicole decorated to the hilt (we're hoping to get them hooked into coming next year - not just decorating).  My big woops was to the poor "Gold Diggers."  One of my clues was taking out the letters "Willow Bay" from Alphabets Cereal then spray painting them with their teams colors & throwing them back in.  All the colors were pretty easy to see except for the Gold - it blended too much.  So trying to think ahead I pulled Emily aside & warned her there were 11 letters she needed to look for.  That's right - count out - "W-i-l-l-o-w-B-a-y" that's 11 right?  Wrong - it's only 9.  I don't know if I should blame it on pregnancy or just that I'm a dork but I gave them an extra bonus point for the time wasted looking for the 2 extra letters that didn't exist.

Monday, October 26, 2009

Quinn's 11th Birthday

Quinn's 11th Birthday has to be one of my favorites! She wanted lots of things, but the most important was being in Sandy, Ut. with Grandma Sally & Grampa Ed. She wanted Grampa to make one of his famous chocolate cakes - he even had a layer of cheesecake in the middle, yum - and guess what? I didn't have to cook, frost, or decorate a single thing! I do love making fun cakes, but just enjoying it was even better.  We shopped for opals (Aunt Mindi showed her one this summer and since they're the official gem for October - Quinn couldn't wait to get one), earrings (Jessi even got hers pierced!), and lots more girl stuff. 

One of the other fun thing we did was go to "Jungle Jim's" funland. They have quite a few indoor carnival rides that we were afraid she might have remembered being lots "bigger" than they actually were. But everyone loved it.

Josh's smile tells all - Bumper Cars all the way!

We let Quinn bring a friend with her, Cassidy Swanson, and they had a ball together.  Josh even gave her a kiss on her cheek!  I couldn't get my 11 year old to want to try on any clothes, she just wanted to save all her money for a "Build-a-Bear."  Mom reminded me that soon enough her stuffed animal craze would fade & I would miss it.  So we compromised, I bought her this new sweater and she bought this cute little outfit she has on "Lily" for a "Build-a-Bear" Puppy she named Delilah. She was ecstatic when she got home and found all the clothes (even the little bathrobe with a hole for her tail) fit her 2 kitties.  She even carries the poor cats around in the little purse she bought for Delilah.  I teased Joaquin we should start praying now that she'll find a good man who'll love her or she'll become that crazy old woman with 30 cats in her home and be blissfully happy.  I wonder how many times my Mom said the same things about me?!?
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Tuesday, October 13, 2009

Failure as a Mother

Do you ever have one of those days where you feel like you have failed as a mother? Well today was that day. If you want a feel good warm & fuzzy post about motherhood go to Brittany & Brandon's (they're on the sidebar). She wrote the best post last week about how important it is to be a Mom.

This post is directed more to the Mom's who need a good laugh because they mess up, forget everything they read, and are just plain selfish sometimes. If you're reading this Mom, I promise I'll try harder tomorrow - they are your grandchildren after all.

The day started happy enough but got a little ugly on the way home from dropping off parts for a customer. Josh is 5 now and can unbuckle himself any time he desires, but poor Shelby is still too little to escape. So for about 1/2 hour Josh just "bugged" Shelby. I tried the regular threats - you'll have to take a nap, go to bed early, etc. Nothing seemed to work. Shelby's the screamer, Josh is the brother - it was a loud drive. So when we got home from taking Joaquin lunch I told the kids I was pretty tired and needed to rest for a little while. Thinking I was being nice I told them they could take the kittens up to Josh's room and play quietly while I slept on the couch for a little bit.

Being 7 months pregnant and the mother of 4 children allows me the pleasure of dropping off to sleep any time during the day and today was no exception. I woke up a full hour later to a completely quiet house. My little heart did a quick pitter patter as I thought joyfully, "Maybe they fell asleep." Then I laughed at myself and started to search for destruction.

I didn't have to look far as in Josh's room I found crackers, frosted mini wheats, cat food, & water in the carpet. Then I followed the giggling to Quinn & Jessi's room where these two adorable children had dumped every prized toy, jewelry box, lotion bottle, crayon, marker, school papers, blankets - everything into the middle of the floor. I'm not sure if they were jumping off the top bunk into this "fort" but do you know the first thing I thought (this shows how selfish I've become) "At least I got to take an hour nap!" Then instead of scolding my little ones I told them we better work hard to clean this up before the girls got home from school. I didn't want to get caught sleeping on the job!

I realize the better choice would have been to give them time out and a lecture - but then I knew I'd be stuck cleaning it all up by myself. They colored with crayons & markers on the wall, lost all of Quinn's earings, bent Jessi's prized Mickey Mouse ears she got from Disneyland, rubbed lotion on every backpack & in the carpet, used up all their stickers, played in their "make-up" - it was ugly.

As I began cleaning up I felt less guilty about the unsupervised destruction though when I found at least 2 dozen of my nice pencils & pens (these I use for my Napa work & they have their own), my paper cutter, scissors, stapler, & at least a ream of paper with scribbled "stuff" over them that I have been searching for for days.

Tuesday is our busy day with Quinn & Jessi's extra curricular piano, basketball, & gymnastics, but at least they hadn't had time to see their room yet. After dinner is when everything went to pot as Quinn walked into her room looking for her earrings. She & Jessi cried for over half an hour over the lost & ruined items, Josh & Shelby cried because of the tongue lashing they got from Dad after he heard about their mess from the girls (You notice I didn't tell him-I found half of my office supplies that I wouldn't have after all).

So the night ended with everyone crying loudly in their beds at 7:45pm. And now I have time to worry over child #5 who'll be joining our family. I hate the varicose veins running down my legs, the vivid dreams that make you feel like you haven't rested all night, and just feeling huge - but after today I'm grateful I have 2 more months before this little one makes her appearance. I am so not ready.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Josh's 5th Birthday

This should come as no surprise to my friends and family - all Josh wanted for his birthday was . . . CRAFTS. He wakes up every morning with something on his mind to make. I'm constantly saving paper towel rolls (for kazoos), toilet paper rolls (for race cars), milk lids (for wheels), etc. I decided to make my life easier and just order crafts instead of search through Family Fun magazines. A few weeks ago I got onto the Oriental Trading Company's website and just let Josh pick whatever crafts he thought looked cool. Needless to say we ordered about 7 different crafts for under $40. It was the cheapest birthday ever! And he was sooo happy.

Of course, my favorite part is the cool cakes. Here's this year's choice "The Treasure Chest." Argh Mattee!

Craft #1 - Chinese Dragon Head. Jessi & he put this together on his Birthday (Sunday - Sept. 27) morning.

Craft #2 - Halloween Masks. Both he & Shelby loved gluing a few of these together.

Now this is a craft I give full credit to Donna for, Craft #3 - a race car town. I looked at all those pieces and cringed - Donna said, "Ooh, I haven't bought him a present yet. Could I buy this from you and put it together with him." Wow, I don't know Donna - COULD I KISS YOU?!? They came over to borrow everything from packing tape to a hot glue gun, but the good news is that 2 hours later they were done! There are more projects to come like a "Haunted House" tongue depressor door hanger, wooden motorcycles, beeded necklaces, etc. But I didn't want to bore everyone to tears.

As long as we're chatting about my lovely Mother-in-Law, Donna I just had to put this picture in. Poor Donna was pulling the tarp over the pool in Glenns Ferry with Dennis when she miss-stepped and fell backwards. She hit her head so hard that her one eye went black, her ear plugged up, and now she has double vision. She is looking so much better, has had a blessing by her sons, a Cat Scan from the Doctor, and prayers from all of her grandkids especially.

This is my final picture (I know it's not of Josh - but look how just utterly CUTE this girl is!). Everyone loved the treasure chest cake, especially Shelby who not only wore the treasure but ate a fair amount of it too.