Thursday, November 24, 2011


this is what i am most thankful for.

happy thanksgiving to you and yours.

Friday, November 11, 2011

We have a great tradition in our little village every year on Halloween.   In the park across from the library (just a few blocks from our house) a pumpkin festival is set up.  Picnic tables are stacked, pumpkins brought in, a stage set up for live music, a tent set up to keep pumpkin carvers warm, and there's a food stand with all kinds of yucky and ghoulish food.  For five days anyone can go the park, carve a pumpkin, and find a place for it on the picnic tables.  Big white lights are stapled across the tables to light up the carved pumpkins.  By the final night, it's quite a sight.  We walked down there a few times over Halloween weekend to see the jack o'lanterns.

Halloween was long anticipated at our house.  With the start of costume creating at the beginning of the month.  (I knew I had to get costumes out of the way to make room for birthday celebrating!)  Magnolia was 100 percent sure she wanted to be Bambi.  With the belief that costumes are best imperfect, I set about making a "bambi" costume.  Out of some old wool, this is what I came up with.  Magnolia seemed to think it was perfect and was very happy to wear it to her school party and for trick or treating.

The bambi costume here is the third layer of wool on her body so it looks pretty was a very cold and rainy Halloween!
George's costume was a no brainer.  Lover of all things "wee-ohhh" (or firefighting), he went as a firefighter.  I bought yellow and silver tape and taped it to a blue jacket and blue pants.  He already had a hat and boots.  He had just woken up from a nap here and not too excited about being out in the cold.  George smudged soot from our fireplace on his face.
He rolled in the red wagon on which George hung a rope for a hose and a little ladder on the side.  This kid did not leave his fire truck the WHOLE time!
Neighbors coming out to say hi.
Eating a lot of candy on the ride brought him home full of energy.  Here's our little firefighter breaking down walls in our house to let the smoke out.
Magnolia was a trooper, collecting lots of candy for herself AND her brother.  Here they are home again and helping me hand out the rest of the candy.
It was a Happy Halloween!  

Friday, November 04, 2011

Magnolia celebrated her 5th Birthday in October!  Being five meant she got to have her first birthday party!  She invited her friends that live on the block including two older girls, 9 and 10.   Since we moved in, they have come over to play with Magnolia quite a bit.  They have been such good friends to Magnolia that she asked that they be invited.  They were sweet to come.  I wanted to keep her party super simple so the theme was yellow balloons with pink ribbons.  So, so easy.  I made the invitations.  I ordered yellow helium balloons to line the walk out front and I hung 25 yellow balloons upside down with pink ribbon in the dining room.  And guess what, my kids are STILL playing with random balloons still floating around the house.  You always win with balloons!
 We did a pinata...

 We ate ice cream cone cupcakes...

 We made hot pretzels and then tied them up outside to "bob for pretzels."
We played Pin the Tail on the Donkey.  We opened presents, ran around the house, played in the yard and had lots of fun.  Magnolia LOVED every minute of her special party.  What a great day!
 Her actual birthday fell on a Wednesday this year.  So, after school I picked her up and took these two out to lunch at a super cute lunch spot in our little downtown.  These two were very happy to have lunch  clementine soda there.
 During nap time I got to hold her on my lap as she dozed...I feel like I hadn't done that since she was a baby!  We had some nice quiet time together; chatting, doing homework, and playing.  Finally, as the hour grew closer to dinner (which meant presents!) we waited outside for Daddy to come home.

 Then back inside to survey the presents once more...
 Ahh...finally Daddy's home with Chinese food and the present opening begins!
Magnolia, you love deer SO wanted a deer cake.  You don't have much of a sweet tooth so I made this very simple vanilla cake and topped with our local vanilla custard.  In addition to your new deer,  I tried to make green trees, a yellow path (yellow is your current favorite color) and Kit Kats for logs.  Not only did you love your deer cake, you actually LOVED your cake.  I think it's the first birthday cake you've ever liked and eaten.  You pretty much ate the whole cake and for the following week anytime you asked for it, we gave it to you...breakfast, lunch, or dinner.

Magnolia, I am so proud of you.  You are such a sweet, caring, smart, and silly girl.  And since I didn't take any pictures of you opening your gifts and I have such an obsessive need to document everything about you, I want to list a few of your 5th birthday presents...for the record.  :)  You got 5 colorful silk scarves to be worn as capes, used as baby blankets, build forts with them or however you choose to use them.  You got a fairy tree house and hammock with a fairy lake and canoe and four fairy dolls.  You got a big My Little Pony with everything to comb, blow dry, and style the mane.  Georgie gave you a baby doll that giggles.  I gave you three new horses and a horse game.  I made you a "5" shirt just like you asked since I've made you one since you were two.  I'm sure there was more but I can't remember. It was a great birthday.  You really love telling people you are five!  You really love being five!

Happy Birthday Magnolia!  I hope being five is as magical as it should be!  xoxo