Tag Archives: Halloween

Pumpkin Patch

Another October, another trip to the pumpkin patch. Thank GOD the kids get to go with their classes because taking six children to a muddy pumpkin patch and having to tell them a million times that one is too big or rotten isn’t fun. But being a chaperone with a teacher and her class is awesome.


[I seem to have the ability to create bad weather for any event, so of course it was wet and muddy]

Charlotte is pleased as punch when any routine gets interrupted, so this was just a perfect day for her.


One of the farmers, Joe, showed the kids around. And while Joe was very nice I think perhaps this should be his last time manning a group of 5 year olds around a site that has lots of hard rules to follow.


It’s hard to listen when there are puddles to jump in and worms to wrangle.


But finally the tours were over and it was pumpkin hunting time: the best time of all.

They tasted some farm-made cider, ate some apples and pears, and in 45 minutes the field trip was over. Perfect.

Before I left, I snuck into the store and got some apples and caramel – you can guess what I’m doing today.



Halloween 2015: part 2

It was a weird Halloween.

 Danny was gone the week leading up to it and 80% of the actual day of Halloween. So I did it all myself. Which is fine, but not quite as fun. We started festivities on Wednesday with our kid party which took us into Thursday’s school Halloween parties and eventually Friday.

On Friday Maria had her first choir performance and she did so well. I was so proud of how confident and positive she was. It might have helped that I picked up her two very best friends and took them with me to watch her.



After school she had ballet so while she was dancing, I took the girls to the downtown trick-or-treat thing. Jamie chose to stay home.


I let them choose their own costumes, 100%. That’s a hard one for me. Day 1 Charlotte chose a bat (she chose Belle for Halloween night), Alice chose a storm trooper, Ollie chose a witch, Maria was Wonderwoman and Franci was a pig.

Do you even know the kinds of creative I would have come up with?! I’m talking Wizard of Oz or Lord of the Rings or Circus or ANYTHING BUT FREE CHOICE!!

Sometimes being an easy going parent is sucky. Thank God it doesn’t happen very often.


[dawn gave each of the kids a goody bag full of fun. charlotte tore into that sucker as soon as she could]

Friday night, Maria had 2 Halloween parties: 1 at the bowling alley and 1 at a friend’s house. Having the 6 kittens alone made it really hard to do transport all day long, all by myself. For the nighttime parties, the kids were NOT happy with me at having to get in and out of the car every 2 hours for more taxi time. I bribed them with treats.

On Saturday Alice had her last soccer game (WOOHOO!) and she even scored a goal. SHE SCORED A GOAL!!!

Here’s a little insider fact about big families: kids rarely get to do things alone, things that are just for themselves. Alice had a soccer pizza party and she begged me to just let her be the one to go and not “all the kids.” I wasn’t sure how to make that happen with Dan being gone, but I also knew it was really important to her to have this one thing. Luckily, my cousin Abbey is the sweetest and my kids just adore her and think she basically is magic, so she said she would take Alice and hang out with her there. Oh, it made her day. Then we had Pumpkin-Palooza downtown. Maria danced and the rest of us trick-or-treated.

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The streets are wet because it was rainy.

Happy Halloween.

After that we had a little down time.

But then it was time to go out again. It was raining cats and dogs and I swear that if I didn’t know for a fact I’m not losing it, I might have thought we had the wrong day for Halloween. We were the ONLY ones out trick or treating. I know it was raining, but really?! After about an hour of walking around we headed back home where our pals met us and we decided to go out again. All in all, it was a good Halloween. Cold and wet, but fun.

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Jamie isn’t pictured at all, in case you didn’t notice.

We’re learning how to be the best parents for him. When to let things go – knowing what’s important and what’s not. There are some things that he needs to learn and try and attempt in order to both be a good person and be successful in life. Dressing in costume and participating in Halloween isn’t one of them. I’m not sure I would have let him just stay home had this been any previous year. I might have made him just suck it up and put on a mask just to be with us and be ‘normal’ and ‘have fun.’ Believe it or not, I’ve become a bit wiser over the course of the last 9 months or so and I’ve tried really hard to see the world from Jamie’s eyes and only then make a decision or help him make a decision when it comes to social things. And make those decisions so they are best for him…not us.

It’s hard.

I want really badly for him to love doing things with us, no matter what it is and I’d love to have him in that picture of all the kids in costume. But I’m not going to force him to put on a costume just so I can say he did it. I’m not going to make him knock on strangers doors and talk to them and look them in the eyes and collect candy he’ll never eat just because that’s what most kids are doing. He had a very nice night staying home and watching TV and reading…and I’m okay with that now.

We will see what next year brings but as for this year, we had a very Happy Halloween.

Halloween Party 2013

One tradition that I won’t ever stop with my kids is our tradition of having a Halloween party the week of Halloween.


I started doing it when Maria was pretty little, maybe 3 or 4.  It was a really great way for us to keep in touch with friends who we didn’t see on a regular basis.  I got to hang out with friends I had a hard time getting together with.  And any excuse to throw a party is legit.


The whole week before, the kids and I slowly decorate the house.  JoAnns is usually a good place to hit up because by October 20th or so, their Halloween decor is 70% off which is always wonderful.


[my favorite ‘portrait’ in our house.  Uncommon Goods had this in their catalog and you send in your picture, pick what animal you want to be, and they contractwith an artist to create this.  it’s hysterical.  I’m a freaking pregnant deer!!!]

We decorate as many nooks and crannies in our house that we can find until it looks like the Great Pumpkin threw up all over our house.

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Here’s the thing: I believe in parents having a good time at kids’ parties.  If that means eating delicious food, that’s what it means.  If it means drinking alcohol, let me provide it.  I try to have enough things at my kids’ parties so that adults don’t dread coming.  For Halloween, I had a variety of adult-approved yummies.



(we had several guests bring us bottles of wine.  hostess gifts are the best!)

Killing 2 birds with 1 stone:  Danger Tape.  Because 1) it’s awesome decor.  2) I have 5 loads of laundry behind that door that no one needs to see.


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Have you tried the cookies and cream boxed cookie mix?  It’s wonderfully delicious.


Little ones (like Charlotte and her friends) sometimes need activities.  And the easiest activity is coloring.

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I dressed as a zombie flapper.  Alice thought I looked awesome:


At our parties, we only eat organic and healthy foods.


hahahahahhahahahahha  I kid, I kid.


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We had so many kids in our house that it was difficult to move.  In every room, there’d be 5 or 6 kids playing, running, screaming, eating, jumping, playing video games, reading, wrestling….you name it.

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Yeah, I’ll totally cheers to that.  Like a BOSS.


Maria spent a whole lotta time bobbing for apples.  She’s a mess and 1/2 in this picture.


Sweet Baby Evelyn came, too.  Her first Halloween party. (I actually don’t know if it was or not, but I’m flattering myself by taking the honor of giving her many “firsts.”  Like pumpkin pictures.  Halloween parties. )


And because I can’t leave a kitchen mess at all and Dan knows this and doesn’t try and change this about me (one of the many reasons I love Dan is because he tries really hard to understand and accept my obsessive compulsive behaviors and that’s not always easy) he helped me clean until my kitchen looked like this:


My kids had such a great time.  They had been SO looking forward to it.  I wish I could have invited everyone from each of their classes + all of our “outside school” friends, but I’m afraid our house isn’t big enough.  But I’m so happy we invited those we did.  I’m an anxious person, especially when it comes to socializing.  I don’t like people feeling left out but I also don’t want to come off as someone who is begging to be the cool girl and be friends with people.  I went out of my comfort zone and invited people who I’m not great friends with but who I really admire and look up to and I’m so glad I did.  It’s really easy to be friends on Instagram or Facebook or to say, “Hi,” every morning at school drop off. But it takes more of an effort to have an actual conversation.  Face to face.  Without stuttering and blabbering (if you don’t know this about me, I stutter and carry on conversations when I’m nervous).  Hey, Suzanne, I don’t think I stuttered once, even though I was super nervous to be an “IRL” friend.  Chrissy, your brownies were effing bomb, but I already knew they would be.  You and Scott aren’t too bad yourselves.  Jenny, Ezra’s hysterical and you’re one of the easiest people to be around.  Rainy and Chase, you 2 are the most fun parents ever.  I’ve sucked you all in to my ridiculous parties, and I’m forcing the friendship, so get ready for more.

And everyone else, thank you!  You make our lives happy and exciting and give us 100 reasons to throw parties.  Because it’s really not a party without our favorites present.