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Showing posts from October, 2008

October 31, 2008

The kids carved pumpkins last night. Stuart cut open the tops and the kids took it from there using a pumpkin carving knife that we found at the thrift store. Charlie insisted that he wanted his pumpkin to look just like the one on the package that the little knife came in. Lauren spent an hour fulfilling his little heart's desire.
Claire carved her pumpkin with two front teeth as her own mouth is void of any at the moment.
We've run the gamut when it comes to Halloween... from homemade costumes and trick or treating in the neighborhood...to fall festivals at church. But these both added up to the same thing. Waaaay too much candy and children who turned into fussy, begging urchins until the sugar finally ran out. It turns out when it comes to creating family traditions that the less is more philosophy works best for us.
We finally hit on the perfect way to make the evening special a few years ago. I pack the kids in the car and meet Stuart for dinner at a local restaurant and th…

The Applesauce Classroom

We took a few days off from school last week to make applesauce. I'm not much for gardening or canning but I just can't tolerate that watery jarred stuff that passes for applesauce at the store. I was starting to panic because our freezer was almost starving. A couple of bags of frozen kidney beans, a few loaves of bread and the last two quarts of applesauce from our last extravaganza. It looked like we were going to have to drive for hours to find an orchard but I finally found an apple orchard just one short hour's drive on the back country roads. We came home with five bushels and got busy.

Here's a clean pile of Arkansas Black apples. They make a good thick sauce and a pretty decent apple pie as well.

John and Charlie on apple washing duty. Charlie helped a bit but mostly he assigned himself the job of taste testing. Lauren was my girl Friday during the four days in the kitchen. Without her help, I'd still have four bushels of apples in my closet waiting for …

Staying Dry

"Tim, stay out of the water. You are down to your last dry outfit."
"I'll just roll up my shorts. That'll keep 'em dry." "Tim. Stop. I would like you to come up here on the sand." "I'm fine, Mom. See? The water is only up to my ankles." "Tim! Your backside is soaked!" " Only a little. I'm mostly dry. I'm just in up to my knees." "Wow! Look at this shell! I think I can get it." "Tim?" "Tim?"

Charlie's Surf and Turf

Beach Essentials 7 swimsuits 7 toothbrushes 1 bottle of sunscreen 7 hats 2 swords
Charlie loves his swords. Charlie met the ocean for the first time, sword in hand. "Hey, sharks! I'm not afraid of you! Prepare for battle!" The boy meets his fears head on.
After Charlie finished his duel with the ocean, he turned his attention to the sand. He tried to bury himself but it is hard work to bury oneself with little hands. The big boys were not happy with Charlie's measly progress so they finished the job. Still not satisfied, they turned him into a teddy graham.
The outdoor shower did a great job rinsing off those sandy boys but it didn't take care of the sand in their pockets. We discovered this when the boys hung their trunks up to dry. It was ok, though. Stuart is handy with a vacuum.

Carolina Sunrise

We just got back from vacation. We spent the last week with Stuart's family on the Outer Banks in North Carolina. October is off season so we pretty much had the place to ourselves. There is a lot to do but we didn't. The children preferred the beach and the pool to museums and the local attractions. We played in the ocean and collected buckets of seashells and dug craters in the sand. Some of the cousins All of the cousins The Outer Banks is a long way from Smallville. We've been sandwiched in the car for the last two days. My flock of nightowls left their half-eaten dinners on the table and crawled into bed and were out by 7:30. Stuart and I took over six hundred pictures so there will be more posts to come this week but for now I need to catch up on my sleep.