Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Oh October!

The most beautiful time of the year is upon us and we are fully emerged in pumpkins, costumes, and brightly colored leaves.  We kicked off our October by joining our friends in the Smile Mile, a walk to benefit down syndrome.  It was a cold and beautiful morning and our babes enjoyed being out and about in the crowd.
Mmmmm.....pumpkin donuts
The fall festival came to town and the kids got to experience the variety of foods that can be eaten from a stick.  I'm not a fan of the evening crowd so we ventured during the day and met Nana for lunch.  Despite eating our weight in fried foods at the festival, we made a pit stop at Donut Bank afterwards for iced coffee and pumpkin spice donut holes.
There's been a couple nice and sunny days that have allowed us to play outside and soak up a few extra rays of sun before the looming fall air blows in.  I've been able to complete some outdoor crafts and arrange the 50+ pumpkins and gourds we have been gifted with.  I'm not sure my house has ever looked so fall-ish.
We pulled off our 4th annual bonfire/hayride!  This year we had our biggest crowd yet with 68 people.  It was a perfectly chilly night and it appeared everyone had a good time.  Once again we had our 1-man band and the fire burned long into the night.  The only change next year will be me getting a couple photos!!
Sneak peek at P's costume
I completed the last bit of sewing on the kids Halloween costumes last night and we are ready for our first festivity on Thursday!  This is potentially the last year I can get the kids to dress as a theme....so I will be enjoying every second with my fireman/Dalmatian combo.

Pumpkin carving day!
They chose not so spooky scenes
The kids received an invite from their aunt and uncle to join them at a local pumpkin patch for pumpkin picking, hayrides, horse rides, and a million other activities that my kids jumped at the chance to do.  By the time the kids returned home they were both sound asleep and slept well into the evening.
P with his pumpkin
2 perfect pumpkins
Aside from all the spook-tacular events, I have been enjoying a couple creepy movies while the kids nap or at night after they have gone to bed.  I am a sucker for the Halloween movies and just about any frightful movie (as long as it isn't of the paranormal nature)!!

We have ditched our Direct TV (hello extra $100 a month) and are now using Sling to watch our favorite shows.  We no longer have DVR which means each and every Sunday night I am parked in front of the tv from 8-9 watching The Walking Dead.  Who would have thought a show about zombies was literally the best show ever?
Our babysitters....but who watches who? :)
Scott and I have been on 2 date nights this month!!  This is completely abnormal but so enjoyable!!  Our first date we stayed in the area and visited friends and drove around the back roads making sure all the pumpkin patches had been completely cleared of their cheerful orange inhabitants.  Our 2nd date night we headed into town and enjoyed a quiet dinner talking about kids and "the beginning" of us.  As good as it is to have some adult time and re-connect, we are always happiest when we are all back home under the same roof.

With just a handful of days and events left in the month of October, the rain has settled in and the cool air has descended.  We're prepared to send off the month by enjoying a party or two, eating a bit of candy, sipping hot cider and watching kid friendly scary movies. We'll watch the leaves continue to change colors across the farm and the grass to fade from its summer green to fall brown.  Soon enough Thanksgiving will be upon us....
Fall at the farm

Friday, October 9, 2015

Chasing Summer

On the Road!
The end of summer brought one last summer fling to the Fish4.  We loaded up the car and drove 7 hours south to Hot Springs, Arkansas.  The trip served 2 purposes, we met up with 2 guys that Scott went to school with (and their families) and it was also 1 of 3 states that I needed to complete my adventures in all 50 states.
Home sweet home

The kids have road tripped a handful of times, but that doesn't ease the fear of wondering how they will behave on this trip.  We packed a few movies, a few toys, lots of snacks, and off we sailed (drove) south.  The first 2 hours the kids entertained themselves by talking, playing and daydreaming out the window.  We saw numerous cotton fields, field fires and even a combine completely engulfed in flames.

We stopped for lunch and told the kids if they napped we'd let them watch a movie when they woke up.  Happily, they took the bribe and by the time naps were over, we were roughly 2 hours away from our final destination.

We stayed at Catherine's Landing in a cute 2 story cottage.  The kids had their own loft bedroom and Scott and I had the bedroom downstairs.  The cabins were nice, updated and super clean.  Ours was located up against the woods and we were next door to the cabins our friends were staying in.

My little family
We spent the first evening piling our group on a golf cart and touring the area.  We grilled steaks, watched for armadillos, and caught up with our friends.  The kids went to bed easily and it felt pretty good when Scott and I finally turned in for the night.  How is that riding in a car all day can make you so incredibly tired??
It's a dilla!!
Saturday we slept in as much as the kids would allow before joining our friends for breakfast.  Afterwards we suited up, slathered on the sunscreen, and spent the day boating in the beautiful 88 degrees of Arkansas sun.  There weren't may boats out and we practically had the beach to ourselves.  The guys threw the football while the kids splashed around.  The lake was surrounded by cliffs and trees.  The water was a little chilly but our bodies adjusted quickly.  I don't think the kids noticed the chill at all.
My boys
Us girls

Someone was pondering life with a mouthful of grapes
As afternoon descended upon us, I took the littlest back to the cottage for a nap while the boys stayed on the water.  They came back around dinner time and we all ventured into the town of Hot Springs for dinner.  We settled on an Italian joint called Angels, it was delicious!  While we were in town we felt the warm water of the hot springs and I enjoyed seeing the downtown area.

My tiny loves
After the kids were tucked into their beds, the adults stayed up playing games far later than I am used to.  After midnight struck, my eyes wouldn't allow being awake another minute.  I was happy to crawl  into our crisp white sheets and close my eyes.
Family vacation 

Before I knew it, sun was beaming through the thin blinds and we heard a little voice coming through the vent saying "Mommy I awake!"  Then we heard that same little voice tell her big brother, "go get mommy or daddy."  She was in her pack-n-play and needed a hand getting out.

After hugs and saying farewell to our friends, we loaded up the car and headed back to our sweet Indiana home.  We stopped at a mom & pop donut shop where I was positive one of us was going to get food poisoning, but I was proved wrong when I tasted the best donut I've ever ate and none of us got sick.  The car ride home went as well as the car ride down.  The babies entertained themselves, caught a nap, and enjoyed eating in the car (that is a treat in itself!).  The 2 year old managed to make the road trip accident-free and only needed 1 pee break on the entire drive home.  I felt that may have been the most impressive event of the entire weekend.

As good as it feels to have new land under our feet and breathe in the air of a new location, there's no place like home.
The Gang