Sunday, October 26, 2008

Miscellaneous Fall Fun

Jake keeps us on our toes - I don't even know how to begin to explain him. He is crazy and funny and intense. He oozes personality. For instance, this past summer Rob's parents were here for a visit and we went bowling, which Jake loves because he loves anything involving balls. We set up the little ramp for him and he quickly caught on to pushing the ball down it. Then one time, with no prompting, he went up to take his turn, turned around, and bumped the ball down the ramp with his rear end. We were all in hysterics at this random act of Jakey-ness.

Today he and Haley were downstairs watching the "Elmocize" DVD and when I went to check on them I found him like this:

Yeah, he's going to be up late tonight!

The other night, Jake went into the bathroom to get in the tub and he was quiet for a few too many minutes. I found him like this, holding my favorite eyeliner:

I love this crazy, wacky kid!


As a kid growing up in Seattle, my mom would rarely let me and my siblings play inside on a sunny day. Maybe it was the fickle weather (or maybe it was the fact that she had 6 kids!), but if it was nice out, she would shoo us out the door. This has stayed with me, and I find myself trying to take advantage of every nice day - or hour - we're having, knowing it could be the last one before freeze-up. We got the first snow of the year this morning, but it has melted now and this week looks to be a nice one. More time to ride bikes!
We've enjoyed playing at parks after school, taking walks, and going for bike rides. Jake got a new bike - his "tricycle bike" he calls it - and he can't get enough of it. We had traded in his old plastic trike for a Scuut bike, which has been great for teaching both kids to balance better, but I felt like the pedaling practice was important too. You can see in his face how proud he is when he's riding it - anything to be like his big sister!

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

The Great Pumpkin Patch

Last weekend we made our annual trip to our favorite local pumpkin farm. We were grateful for the nice weather and that our friend Crys could join us with her baby girl and neighbor. The kids had a fun time exploring the Haunted Trail, riding in the hay truck through the pumpkin fields, and getting lost in the corn maze. After a LONG decision-making period, the perfect pumpkins were chosen for us to bring home. Watch for their carved faces coming soon to the blog!

Jake enjoys the views of the pumpkin fields from the hay truck.

Jake and Haley out for that skeleton!

Amber took in the views from a wagon.

The haunted covered bridge.

Jake and Rob wonder why I insist on so many pictures!

One day in the middle of running errands, Jake and I stopped at the hardware store's pumpkin patch....I can't get enough children-pumpkin pictures!

Sunday, October 12, 2008

It's Not Winter Yet

I have been having illicit thoughts lately (No, not that kind! This is a family blog!). As I drove home from the gym one morning a few weeks ago, I thought to myself "It will be so fun when we get the first snowfall." It was out there in my thoughts before I could stop it. I've also been looking forward to the cozy feel of the furnace turning on, and the stark and silent beauty that "freeze-up" brings to our town.

Anyone who has talked to me or read this blog in the last 5 years knows that I am not a big fan of North Dakota winters. They are bitterly cold, long, windy, and did I mention cold? By contrast, autumn is usually my favorite season. I love the brisk days, the glowing golden trees, the smell of woodsmoke in the air. As summer wound down last year, I found that I couldn't enjoy autumn because of what I knew was coming next: month after month of winter. I let my pessimism and dread ruin my favorite season! So this year I am trying my best to enjoy every bit of fall that I can. We are harvesting the mini pumpkins from our garden, planting mums in the front window boxes, baking pumpkin bread and pumpkin bars and pumpkin pancakes, and savoring the fact that we can walk Haley to and from school. Sure, winter is coming, but we'll deal with that when it gets here. And who knows? If those illicit thoughts keep slipping in, some day I just might end up enjoying winter here.