Monday, September 27, 2010

All Hallows Eve

We had a fun weekend getting the house all spruced up for Halloween. After all the decorating was done we settled down to a Halloween movie & treats. What movie? Tim Burton's The Corpse Bride of course. This and The Nightmare Before Christmas are two of our favorite movies - so much so, that we watch them year round :)

Here is my shelf decor with my new wreath. Love it!
The kids had a ball burying this poor guy in the garden. They even named him Luke. The funny thing is that the next morning Ryan and I noticed that some of the bones were dug up and had fresh teeth marks in them. Bentley apparently thought they were real bones. Oh the disappointment when he realized they were just styrofoam. He hasn't bothered with them since.

The kitchen ghost that chats us up during meals. The kids made the paper chain.

The sign that Finley like to play with and hide his mini skulls in.
Our stair banister & sign over the sun-room archway.

Only one thing left to make ... I'm hoping it will be done this weekend - a spooky Halloween tree for the center of our dining room table.

the Jedi's

Soccer season started a month ago for Finley and this year Ryan decided to coach the team. When they had their first practice/meeting, the kids were deciding on a name. The boys must have made a pact or something before-hand because when they all got together they each wanted a Star Wars name. So, the Jedi's it is. They have done very well so far this season and it's so fun to see all the kids and the progress they've made.

Saturday, September 25, 2010


Yesterday Berlin participated in a little fashion show put on by some girls in our neighborhood. She chose to wear her Belle costume (her favorite dress-up) and twirl on the runway with all her friends. It was really so cute to see all these girls dressed up. She couldn't stop talking about it all day long. What a fun little idea. Here's just some of the cuteness to hit the runway.

Many thanks to the gals who put it on - it was FABULOUS!

Thursday, September 23, 2010

new Halloween wreath - CHECK!

I'll admit, I used to hate Halloween. That is until we had kids. Now, it's my 2nd fave holiday of the year. Last year I got a ton of awesome decor on sale, but the one thing I didn't get was a wreath, cause I just couldn't find one that wasn't cutesy or cheesy. Then, I found this wreath on a blog (sorry I don't remember who's blog).

I loved the black/white fabric and the flowers, etc that adorned it. I didn't love the monsters though, or the brighter than bright orange (muted colors are more my thing). Since I couldn't figure out what to do in place of the monsters, I kept putting it off, that is until about 3 weeks ago. I pulled out our Halloween books and inspiration hit ... all thanks to this little gem:  The Gashlycrumb Tinies by Edward Gorey

This is one of our FAVORITE Halloween books ever (and one of Ryan's fave illustrators). So, I decided to use pics of the kids in place of the monsters from the inspiration wreath. I am very pleased with the way it turned out and I can't wait to get out the rest of our Halloween decor this evening.

My wreath as of this morning (there are still a couple things to add, but I ran out of fabric) so this is it for now. I also still need to give it a hair-cut. The fabric ends are a bit long for me. But I was so excited I just had to take a picture of it.

The best news, I did this all for under $15:
1. 14" straw wreath form = $2.40 (Joann's)
2. Black/white striped fabric = $7 (Robert Kaufman fabric from Hancock's)
3. Vintage buttons = already had
4. Various random black/white fabrics for fabric flowers = $4.75 (Joann's)
5. Quilter's pins (attach all the pics/flowers) = already had
(note: you could use glue, but I wanted the freedom of changing it up over the years so I just stuck the quilter pins into the wreath form).

Not bad, not bad at all.

Friday, September 17, 2010

Pears, maggots, and canning - oh my!

REWIND:  A few months ago I ordered 2 boxes of large pears from an orchard down in Orem (Stratton Fruit Growers) and I got them last weekend. They were still VERY green and I noticed that some had wormhole scars on the outside. "No big deal," I thought. I'm sure they sprayed or did whatever to avoid worm problems. That was the last I had thought about it.

FAST FORWARD: About 1/2 the pears are ripe enough to can today. After cutting 6 pears in a row, I begin to curse the orchard. Why? Because this is what my fruit bowl looked like. How many little white maggot/worms do you see? I'll tell you, 7! Ok then, scrap that 1/3 of the box. 

Don't believe me? See for yourself ... (warning, grossness is about to occur).

Some may say, oh, just cut around the bad part. I say - DISGUSTING! If it has any sort of worm or larvae in them, they are gone, chucked, disposed of, trashed. The whole thing! Seriously. Why would anyone think of using any part of a pear (or any fruit) knowing that it had a worm in it? Gross. Just plain GROSS. 

It's a good thing I really like canning. Cause let's be honest, 3 hours of canning to yield only 6 jars of not-so-tightly packed fruit is frustrating. Here's to hoping the other box is better.

State Fair 2010

We took the kids to the State Fair this past week. They have the cutest little Farm Country exhibit that's interactive. It was the best part of the fair in my mind. We got to see lots of animals, ride some rides (or cry on the rides if you are Berlin), drink lemonade, watch silly sea lions, witness a monkey freaking out, and get our fill of crazy fair people.

Monday, September 13, 2010


We got a sweet deal from to Fatcats. For next to nothing we got 2 hours of bowling, free shoe rental, 1 large pizza and 2 pitchers of soda for up to 6 people. So we took the kids last week for a fun night out. Finley & Berlin were hilarious. Berlin schooled all of us the first game, then Ryan took control by getting a gazillion turkeys - show-off!  But it was a blast. And we actually ended up with 4 hours of bowling since our screen stopped working and it reset when they moved us over to a new lane....sweet. Though, after 3 hours we were all tuckered out and headed home.

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Restless Nights

Looks like someone thought about getting out of bed in the middle of the night, but changed her mind 1/2 way there.

When I went to wake up Finley the other morning, this is how I found Berlin sleeping. She was out because she didn't budge even after all the beeps/flashes on my camera. How could this possibly be comfortable???

Friday, September 10, 2010

The ups & downs of school

With two weeks of Kindergarten under our belt, here are a couple of things we love & some we don't ....

Thumbs UP:
The best thing ever just might be morning kindergarten.  SHOCKER huh. But, in all honesty, getting up at 6:45 hasn't been all that bad. In fact, it's been great. After walking Finn to Kindergarten I usually keep walking for another hour. And by the time I get home, I still have a couple hours to run errands before I have to walk back over and get him. My days are definitely more productive and I'm lovin' it.

Oh, and I finally got a cute pic of him in front of the school (due to Ryan's concern I edited the school name).

Thumbs DOWN:
Finley had his first visit to the nurse's office last week. Apparently he got pushed down pretty hard at recess and split his knee open pretty good. Because there was blood, he had to go to the office. He was not loving the cleanser they put on the knee nor the band-aid. Of course, he's tried to milk his wound for all he can get, "Mom, I think McDonald's is one of the things that will help me be happy today."

Thumbs UP:
Finley loves going to school with some of the best kids ever! It's like having a play-date every day! Here he is lining up with his buddy W.


Thumbs DOWN:
Me: Finn, how do you like Kindergarten?
F: It's long, and the playground is stupid!

Apparently Finley hates the playground. I guess the kindergarten kids have to stay in a certain area where there are no swings, no slides, nothing really to be honest. Just an old metal dome, an old metal caterpillar, and an old metal monkey bar. These things were around well before Ryan went to school there, so they are easily 30 + years old. Seriously? No wonder Finn said recess was "stupid".

Thumbs UP:
Getting to have a back-to-school party with friends, a bounce house, bubbles, popsicles, food, and 2 piƱatas full of candy goodness.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010

Visit from my clan

My sister Shauna, her 3 boys, and my mom came into town a few weeks ago for a Utah visit. They stayed with us 1/2 the trip and Finley & Berlin are still going thru cousin withdrawal. If only we all lived closer. Here are some pics from their visit that I "borrowed" from my sisters blog since my camera was MIA during their visit.