Tuesday, December 23, 2008


Well, most of you who read this probably already know this news, but we are having another baby! I am always hesitant to "announce" that I'm pregnant because I have had 2 miscarriages, and there's nothing worse than having to "unannounce" a pregnancy. But I have been to the doctor, saw a healthy little heartbeat on the ultrasound, and I am definitely already developing "the baby bump" ... yes, already! Ugh. I am so sick of all my maternity clothes.

I'm about 10 weeks along now, and I'm due July 20th ... 6 days after my sister-in-law Molly, who is having her first baby around July 14th! Should be fun for the little cousins to grow up together.

Of course, we are all very excited. However, when we first told Audrey about the baby she paused, then calmly said "No." (I should add that in the past when I've asked her if she wants any more brothers or sisters, she has always answered "No, one is plenty!") But when she realized that having a baby added to the family would mean bunk beds, she was all for it. She has been dreaming about bunk beds ever since she spotted them in a display at Kmart! And as time goes by, she keeps saying "when we have the little baby, we can ___, " or "we should name the baby ___". The other day she even said over lunch, "Mommy, when the baby comes, we'll be "Chad & Amy plus 3!" (Can you tell we watch Jon & Kate plus 8"???) So she is accepting and getting excited about the idea too.

I'd say a new baby is the best Christmas present I'll be getting this year!

If I don't post again before Christmas, I want to wish each of you a VERY Merry Christmas. Today I was listening to the song "Welcome to our World" and it brought me back to the true meaning of Christmas. I was so thankful to have that moment to reconnect with what is most important about Christmas - the birth of God's Son, Jesus, and the hope that He brings to us individually and as a community. Here are the words here:

Tears are falling, hearts are breaking
How we need to hear from God
You've been promised, we've been waiting

Welcome Holy Child
Welcome Holy Child

Hope that you don't mind our manger
How I wish we would have known
But long-awaited Holy Stranger
Make Yourself at home
Please make Yourself at home
Bring Your peace into our violence
Bid our hungry souls be filled
Word now breaking Heaven's silence

Welcome to our world
Welcome to our world

Fragile finger sent to heal us
Tender brow prepared for thorn
Tiny heart whose blood will save us
Unto us is born
Unto us is born
So wrap our injured flesh around You
Breathe our air and walk our sod
Rob our sin and make us holy

Perfect Son of God
Perfect Son of God
Welcome to our world

Just reading these words makes me cry. Perhaps I am a bit hormonal ...

Monday, December 15, 2008

Smarter than I give him credit for ...

.... Carter, that is, not Chad. (I already know that Chad's smart!)

For the longest time it has been kind of difficult to know what exactly Carter understands and what he doesn't, simply because until recently he didn't say too much verbally. However, Carter has been saying a lot more in the last month or two. Lately Carter has been fascinated by alphabet letters and has been trying his hardest to sing the alphabet song - it moves a little quickly for his little tongue to make all those sounds, but it sure is cute to listen to him try it! So everywhere we go he yells out "X" or "U" or "O" or whatever letter he happens to see. (At this point he can identify most of them!) So today I'm standing in the checkout line waiting for the woman to scan all my groceries. Carter looked up at the number over our line and said "Eight!" Sure enough, it was an "8". I was kind of surprised but thought, 'Hmm, maybe he just knows the number 8 for some reason." Then he looked at the next number over - and I said "7". He looked farther down the rows and yells "6" .... "5" .... then he looked the other direction and said "9". He was right on with each one!

Guess it isn't only the letters he's been studying ... he's been learning those numbers too!

Smart little boy!

Sunday, December 14, 2008

More Christmas fun ...

It's been another busy week. But I love the busyness of this time of year, so I'm not complaining! Anyhow, I'm just adding a few photos of what's gone on in the Smith house this week.

Once again, Audrey had a bright idea ... and roped the rest of us into participating. She decided to make her own nativity scene in her room. Audrey was an angel (wearing a Cinderella dress and her flower girl headpiece) and Carter was Joseph (wearing Audrey's sweater coat as a robe ... Sorry, Carter). I was Mary and Chad was a wise man (she had outfits for us too but we managed to avoid getting into the picture!) You can see the baby "Jesus" there, a yellow star above Audrey's head, and the piggy bank sitting in the cradle is one of the wise men's gifts. :) I thought it was pretty cute. I'm glad the true meaning of Christmas has been communicated, not just Santa and presents!

This week Chad's Dad was here on business so we got to spend some time with him! It is his birthday next week (we won't say which one) and we had the chance to celebrate with cupcakes and a gift.

On Saturday we made a gingerbread house ... Audrey absolutely loves this tradition. This house was so easy because the kit came with PREMADE icing - I didn't realize that when I bought it but I was glad for that little detail. [Kelly, next time you have to buy this brand of gingerbread kit!]

Last night was Chad's company Christmas party, so for once I got to dress up and paint my nails!
We had a great time, and the food was awesome - filet mignon! Molten chocolate cake! Yum!

Hope everyone is finding time to enjoy this Christmas season. I absolutely love sharing it with the kids ... it's all so magical and fun! If I can just keep my energy up ... :)

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Pictures that will NOT make it into the Christmas card ...

So, I've been trying to get the kids to take a half decent picture together that I can use for Christmas cards. Notice that my aspirations are not grand, as I am just looking for something half decent! Yet, as anyone with small children will attest to, this is much easier said than done! I thought I would share some of my failure attempts here ...
Nobody's looking, and Audrey's sneering ...

WHOA! WAY too close up ...

Yes, I lowered myself to bribing with food; the upside is that they actually cooperate, but the downside is that the kids are busy chewing and eating while I am trying to snap a picture ...

Ummm, this is pretty self-explanatory ...

In this one, Audrey has a candy cane stain across her mouth, and you can actually see pretzels hanging out of Carter's mouth - ew...

Kind of cute, but WAY cheesy, and again, we have that pretzel issue ...

So I did finally get a half decent one, you will be happy to know ... and it only took 3 days and 10 candy canes! (hahaha)

Friday, November 28, 2008

Thanksgiving Tree, Part 2 & Christmas, Part 1

Our finished Tree of Thanks (and pardon Audrey's unmatching orange socks, but the girl just wants to walk to the beat of her own drum ...)

Well, the Tree of Thanks was a big hit. The kids loved putting their leaves on, and I have to say, Chad and I enjoyed it too. We have so many things to be thankful for and God has blessed us in so many ways. I love that we have a holiday that reminds us of this!

We had a great day yesterday at my parents' house along with my brother and my uncle. We all went around and said what we were especially thankful for, as well as telling each person what we appreciate about him/her. We have that whole Swiss/German background thing, so sharing feelings doesn't happen a lot in our family, so it was particularly special. Unfortunately, I was too caught up in all the fun to think about taking pictures. So the only one I have is of the kids in their pj's before we headed home.

Here are my two crazy nut cases (I say that with love!):

So ... now that Thanksgiving is over, Audrey is, of course, in full blown Christmas mode. The other day she decided to deck the halls with some Christmas pictures that she drew.

Here is Santa ...

A manger scene ...

A Christmas tree ...

And last but not least, our musical snow globe, which Audrey has been begging to put up since ... October maybe?? It went up today!

Happy Holidays everyone ... I'm hoping I can just savor the Christmas season and not get caught up in all the rush!

Saturday, November 22, 2008

5 going on 10

This morning Audrey did a couple funny things that I thought I'd post, mostly so that I can remember them, and perhaps so someone out there can get a laugh.

We were sitting at the breakfast table. This morning Audrey woke me up and sang out "Breakfast is ready!" I was unsure what that quite meant, so out to the kitchen I quickly went. (I was hoping she hadn't attempted scrambled eggs or something!) Sure enough, Audrey had set the table, put dishes and food at each person's place that she knew they would want to eat, got out the vitamin bottles, laid out napkins, got out sippy cups ... she even filled Diesel's food and water bowl! It was really quite thoughtful and lovely of her! Anyhow, as we all sat to eat, I mentioned that since Carter is having a little issue with diaper rash (and loose stools, sorry -tmi, I know) that perhaps I shouldn't give him Raisin Bran. I said "I think it would be..." and Audrey ended my statement for me - "TOO much fiber, Mom." I looked at Chad and said - "What is she, 10 years old? How does she know about fiber??"

Then later, Audrey got out Chad's guitar and was "playing" it. Next thing I know, she has a big hat box opened next to her. I said "What is that for?" and she matter-of-factly replied "So people can throw money in it while I play guitar." Hil-arious! I threw a few coins in and she mentioned that really I should throw DOLLARS in. I said, "Don't push your luck. The tooth fairy already came this week and brought you a dollar..." Again, what is she, 10 years old already??

Funny kid.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Going, going, GONE!

Yup, it's official ... Audrey's first tooth is gone. Last night she was eating some popcorn and she came running up to me holding her tooth (and bleeding profusely from the mouth) and said "MOM, my tooth fell out!" After that initial excitement wore off, she was a little sad about her tooth being gone. I think since she's one of the first of her friends to lose a tooth, she feels a little self-conscious. But then we put it under the pillow, the tooth fairy came with $1, and it was all good.

Of course we have to make crazy faces.

By the way, this has happened BEFORE the Christmas pictures get taken, which I am actually excited about - what better way to commemorate this significant event in the life of a 5 year old? :)

Monday, November 17, 2008

Things that make you go hmmm....

Today when I was putting on Carter's coat, I noticed a pocket inside for an MP3 player.

For a 2 year old???

By the way - Audrey's coat has one as well ... with special slots for earbuds.

Can't we just let them be little???


Kids Activities

I have this second career. It involves chauffeuring my daughter to birthday parties. It has become, like, an every other weekend activity lately. It also involves a financial investment, so the presents have been getting cheaper and cheaper. (Sorry if you have invited Audrey to a party and received a smaller present but we are trying to live on a budget ....)

Anyhow, at this last party, I got talking to the other moms, and the conversation turned toward kids' activities. One mom was talking about gymnastics and pee wee sports, another was talking about ballet, swimming lessons, and virtual golf lessons (virtual golf? "what is that?" I wanted to ask ...) They then turned to me - what is Audrey in?

Fortunately I do have that once-a-week art class that all four of her grandparents gave her for her birthday .... but other than that? She's in preschool. For me that's enough. I'm wondering - how many things should a 5 year old be "in" anyhow?

It amazes me how busy kids are these days, even preschoolers! I certainly don't begrudge anyone for involving their kids in some lessons or classes, I think it's great to expose kids to different opportunities if you can, but I just wonder - what ever became of playing? The mother who was talking about virtual golf has her kids in school 4 mornings a week, said that every Friday they go to a museum or zoo or something, and on weekends go out for other activities... my question was - how do they have time for all this? When do they get to just color and imagine and run around like banshees, just for the fun of it?

I certainly want my kids to have the opportunity to try new things and learn new skills. I actually wish I could involve them in a few more activities, like swimming lessons and the like. But I also want them to learn how to entertain themselves, and imagine great things, and have time to play with other kids in an unstructured kind of way. Maybe this seems selfish - but I also really don't want to spend my days running around from one thing to the next like a chicken with my head cut off. Honestly, I feel like a worse parent when I am on the run too much. I don't think things through, I react too quickly, and I snap too easily. So I kind of feel like it's better for all of us to limit the number of formal activities with which we get involved.

Maybe that makes me a lame mom, but I feel that it makes me a mom who is more available - with the freedom to take walks with the kids or bake cookies together or read books or play Chutes & Ladders. Not that I do these things every day! But I can.

Besides, at least I do spend every other Saturday driving to birthday parties ..... :)

What about you? Are you a "more the merrier" mom in respect to kids' activities or are you more of minimalist when it comes to getting them involved in outside activities? I'd love to hear other opinions on this subject ...

Thursday, November 13, 2008

Loose Tooth

Big update in the life of Audrey ... I think she is about to lose her first tooth! She can literally wiggle it with her tongue.

She keeps going back and forth on how she feels about this new development. Some days she wails "I don't want my tooth to fall out yet!!" but then the next day she says kind of proudly "I think my tooth is going to fall out today, Mommy!"

It is a wonder that Audrey has her top front teeth at all, really. When she was three she ran into our kitchen island and knocked one of them loose. I took her to the dentist, who declared - "well, it may tighten up again, but I predict it falls out within the next 6 months." I was mortified! Who wants their little girl to spend 2-3 years toothless?? (especially when said tooth is right up front and center!) But it ultimately did tighten up and I breathed a big sigh of relief. (Not that a missing tooth really matters in the scheme of things, I just didn't want her to feel embarrassed.)

Well, now that losing a tooth would be age appropriate, I am trying to hype it up for her. However, my dilemma is this: I have the kids scheduled to get pictures done on November 21. And she might look like a hillbilly. . . but at least she will be a cute little hillbilly in a pretty dress! :) Can the tooth hold out for one more week??? Stay tuned for new developments ....

PS - Her other top front tooth is also loose (although not nearly as loose as the other one) ... perhaps she will be singing "All I Want for Christmas is my Two Front Teeth" ;)

Saturday, November 8, 2008

New Family Traditions

So ... I was lovingly scolded by a friend into writing something new on my blog. :) Especially since my facebook status revealed that I was feeling "semi-organized" this week... It was, however, a busy week. On top of the usual weekly activities, our nights were busy as well. On Monday night Chad had an elder meeting at church, Tuesday night we had our small group, and on Wednesday night I hosted a "jewelry party" for my friend Diana, who is a Premier Designs consultant. It was a lot of fun, and for once I didn't get all stressed about the preparations, and whether my floor was clean enough, or the food was plentiful enough. Mostly, it was pretty easy! The best part is that I earned $350 in free jewelry. I can't believe that. I think I will get myself a watch (since mine is broken) and maybe I can do a little Christmas shopping too. Or then again, maybe I will just turn into Mr. T and wear massive amounts of cool jewelry ....

Anyhow, I thought I'd share about a new tradition for our family. Throughout the month of November, I wanted the kids (and Chad and I too, for that matter) to think more about their blessings and all they have to be thankful for. So I constructed a "Tree of Thanks" for our living room. Audrey helped me cut out colorful leaves from construction paper, and each day we all write down on a leaf something we are thankful for, and place it on the tree. By Thanksgiving day, our tree should be full of all the blessings God has graciously given us. Audrey especially is having great fun with this. She is also "helping" Carter think of things he is thankful for. (His first one was "Audrey", hmmm ...) But it has been kind of fun thinking about what Carter might say he is thankful for, if he could really talk ... ceiling fans, the letters "X", "A" & "O", the cat, stars .... all some of his favorite things!

Our Tree of Thanks. In its early stages obviously ... I'll have to post a picture of how it looks at Thanksgiving

We have also started having "movie night". Movie night has never been possible for us until recently, mainly because Audrey didn't really care to sit and watch a whole movie. But lately she enjoys picking out a special show for us all to watch together. Of course, this involves popcorn and water and lots of pillows and blankets. The funny thing to me is that while Audrey only recently would sit through a whole movie, Carter seems quite happy and content to watch a movie at age 21 months. (As Chad said the other day, he appears to be our couch potato child ...) He got up a few times to play, but he kept coming back to sit with me and eat some more popcorn. Last night we watched the Curious George movie, and the week before we watched Mary Poppins. Mary Poppins appears to be a favorite because Audrey has been walking around singing "Let's Go Fly A Kite" and "A Spoonful of Sugar" incessantly ... Carter tries to chime in but he mostly sings a word or two here and there! :) I personally LOVE movie night because the kids are happy to eat popcorn and watch ... and the grown-ups are happy too, whether they're really watching the movie or sneaking a little nap in while they have the chance .... (see photo below!)

Audrey kept saying "Wake up Daddy! You're missing it!"

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

A good use for an old pumpkin ...

The other morning I caught this little squirrel on our front step. He (she?) was perched on top of the pumpkin, taking big bites out of it, and then chewing the big piece from his scrawny little paws. It was kind of cute to watch, now that Halloween is over (and the pumpkin is rotting anyway).... but I wasn't so thrilled to find him taking big bites out of our pumpkin 2 weeks ago before it was carved!!

[Sorry for the blurriness. I took this picture through our screen door.]

Monday, November 3, 2008

Halloween Fun

We had a really fun Halloween. I think having it fall on a Friday made it even better since no one had school the next day. A number of us neighbors decided kind of last minute to have a potluck dinner/parade before trick or treating. I offered up our driveway since it's kind of in the middle. Everyone brought something to share and it turned out to be great fun for adults and kids alike! (And we sneakily got all the kids to actually eat dinner ... although I kept finding Carter carrying around cupcakes and cookies ... little sneak!) I think this might just have to become another tradition!
The whole gang

My little dinosaur ... still waking up from his nap, and not too sure how he feels about wearing a costume!

My little unicorn with her "very scary", self-designed pumpkin :)

Still not sure he likes this costume thing ... (but he sure looks cute in it!)

Audrey and Emma

Couldn't resist the cute hineys shot

A knight and Batman (aka Nathan and Thomas)

Getting ready to parade to the music "Celebrate Good Times" (Audrey's choice!)

Again, so thankful for all the great memories, the great neighbors, and the chance to enjoy it all as a family!

Thursday, October 30, 2008

Preschool Halloween Parade

Today was Audrey's Halloween parade/party at preschool. I'm sure I'll post some pics in the next few days of Audrey and Carter and all their little friends trick or treating, but here's a sneak peek of Audrey's costume. I love this costume. It's not very "creative" but I didn't have to do anything but buy it on clearance two days after Halloween last year! Plus it's warm, and she can get it off in a jiffy if necessary!

Who knew that a cat and unicorn would be such great friends! :)

Friday, October 24, 2008

Hooray for New Hairdos!

You know, when I first found out that the squirmy being inside my belly was a little girl, I dreamed of all the little girl stuff I would enjoy ... pretty dresses, princesses, coloring books, shopping together, baking yummy stuff together, and last but not least - creating cute hairstyles with bows and ribbons and curling irons with my little lady.

Well, some of those dreams have come true. Audrey loves anything arts and crafts, dresses up like a princess, enjoys helping me bake (ok, she likes licking bowls, but she'll come around ...), but the hair thing.... let's just say that she has been less than enthusiastic about letting me touch her hair. It had gotten to the point where I just totally gave up trying to coerce her into letting me style it. Even running a comb through it would elicit sounds of screeching that most women only make while in labor or something. Argh. So I had resigned myself to having the girl who just wore a headband every day. I was tired of the fight, although I would look at Audrey's friend Kaitlyn's hair and sigh. Her mom Kelly is a hair stylist, and Kaitlyn always has good hair. Audrey's hair often looked like a nest, but what could I do? I figured some day she would give a hoot about her hair style. Just not right now.

Fast forward to Wednesday night. Audrey had "picture day" at school on Thursday and after carefully navigating the "what outfit to wear" discussion, I said "so, do you just want to wear a headband tomorrow?" Then I said tentatively "you know, you're hair is long enough now, we could try braids ... Emma wears cute braids, Kessa wears cute braids, Kaitlyn wears cute braids..." Audrey perked up, so I said - "I could just try them out now if you want?"

She actually let me do it. And got more and more excited as I showed them to her. Even Chad came in and said "Those braids look really cute Audrey!" (Although with Audrey you have to be careful about the compliments, too many compliments make her suspicious!) By the end she said excitedly "I want to wear braids tomorrow for my picture!" I tried not to whoop for joy out loud. :) So ... she wore braids in her hair for her school picture. [Although all morning I thought to myself - I hope those braids are staying in! She has that fine, thin hair like her momma ...]

So now braids are the hairdo du jour in this house. Guess what she wanted again today? Braids. I should be careful what I wish for... now we'll probably have to get up ten minutes earlier every day just to put braids in ... well, I'm just happy for the change. But I now wonder what her next hairdo obsession will be ...

Of course Audrey can't pose for a camera without making a face these days ...

Best buds coloring together (and Audrey making her bro laugh his head off)

Just because he's so cute too! :)

Wednesday, October 22, 2008


So. Over the past couple weeks I have been emailing (via facebook, my new favorite addiciton, I mean, WEBSITE) with an old friend from high school, Kris. We have been talking about having a high school reunion. Believe it or not (it's hard for me to believe!), next year it will be 20 years since we graduated from Plumstead Christian School in 1989 .... 20 years. Our class has never had a reunion. But now, in the age of facebook and the internet, it just seems much more feasible that we could find many of our former classmates. As it is, I have found about 10 of our 58 former classmates just on facebook.

HOWEVER, I have a few problems.
1. My partner in crime, Kris, lives in British Columbia, CANADA. As in, the province between Washington State and Alaska. Pretty far away to be helping me much with the planning here. Although, I do have a couple friends from high school in the area who could help ...

2. Although facebook and the infamous "google search" are helpful, there are still those who will be hard to find ... especially those who have married names like "Amy Smith" .... you couldn't find me on the internet if you wanted to...

3. What the heck do you do at a high school reunion? I don't want to stand around in uncomfortable clothes with everyone trying to act like they have it all together ... I'd rather keep it real. But I would want it to be fun too ... but I don't feel like I'm a fun party planner type person....

4. The other major problem is ... umm, well, I don't want to be in charge of it. Yeah, I guess that's a problem.

SO. My question to any readers out there is: Have you been to a reunion? What did you do at your "reunion"? What did you like about it or not like about it? I am looking for your help here so anything you could add would be great ...

Thanks in advance!!

PS - Sure wish I could post some old pics from my high school days ... but I don't have a scanner or the right technology to do so! You would, like, totally LOVE my big 80's hair and "totally awesome to the max" clothing!! EEK!

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Crazy Carter

Lately, Carter has a thing with sunglasses. Here he is yesterday, trying on Chad's sunglasses.

Here he is today, trying on Audrey's sunglasses ...
He has also made off with my real glasses and I had trouble finding them. I even had to root through the garbage to make sure he hadn't thrown them out ... so now I keep them out of reach. (I also have to hide my contacts because he has lost one of those as well. Grr.)

Last night we gave Carter a bath. Chad got him in his jammies and he was playing a bit before bed. We hadn't emptied the water out of the tub, because Audrey was getting in soon after him, and rather than refill the tub, we just have both kids use the same bath water (and hope that Carter didn't pee in the bathtub ...) Anyhow, at one point, I heard a thud come from the bathroom, and then a splash. When I went to see what happened, this is what I saw:

I think he was reaching for a toy and fell in. That or he just really wanted to play in the water more! The funniest thing to me is that he didn't cry or yell out or anything. Just sat up in the water and started playing! :) What a crazy kid.

Fun with Grandpa

This past week, we had a visit from Chad's dad, aka "Grandpa," who was in town for a conference. We didn't have a lot of time together, but the time we did have was lots of fun. The kids really enjoyed having Grandpa here!

Audrey & Carter having fun playing with Grandpa.

On Friday, Chad took the day off and we went to the Strasburg Railroad out near Lancaster.

Grandpa & Carter next to the steam engine

Taking a ride in the coach car

Carter & Daddy

Me & Carter, who is more interested in an apple than a photo op.

It was a fun day. I'd love to go back to the railroad when the kids are older and would enjoy it more fully (and when I can go through the gift shop without holding a wiggly toddler who just wants to run around). We did have a broken ornament incident in the gift shop but Carter was not to blame. However, this was a great teaching opportunity for Audrey. We had to go to the gift shop worker and explain what happened, apologize, and pay for the broken item. Don't think she'll be touching stuff in stores for awhile now ...

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Chad is glad ...

.... that for once his wife will watch baseball with him!

The Phillies are in the World Series!! Go Phils!

"The Phillie Phanatic" for those of you who have no clue what this green thing in shoes is!

Monday, October 13, 2008

A BUSY weekend!! But fun ... :)

We had a very busy weekend. On Saturday I took Audrey & Carter to a birthday party while Chad got the house ready for an overnight visit from his Uncle Bob. HOW, you may ask, did we manage to house an overnight visitor in our torn-apart basement? Especially since this is what it looked like only a few weeks ago:

Well, Chad has been busy. And while the basement is not finished, a good amount of work has been completed and this is where it stands now:
Coming along, don't you think?

And this is our downstairs bathroom now. I don't know if we have a "before" picture, but suffice it to say: This bathroom was ugly with a capital "U".

We had a fun Saturday evening with Chad's family: Uncle Bob (in from NC), Uncle Jim & Aunt Sherry (in from Delaware), his cousin Nicole, and his cousin Deanna (w/ husband Matt & kids Olivia and Owen). Deanna & Matt live here in Phoenixville and hosted our get-together! The kids had a great time running around like banshees. (Except for Carter, who was pretty much sick with a cold. Poor Carter!)

Uncle Bob brought his balloon-making equipment that he had used on a mission trip to Romania. He made Audrey a whole butterfly balloon "outfit" and left the balloon stuff for us to enjoy. I took a crash course in balloon animal making and put my newfound knowledge to immediate use (kind of!) as you'll see further down. :)

While everyone went to church Sunday morning, I took Carter (who was too germy to go to church) to Valley Forge Park for a nice long walk in the BEAUTIFUL 70 degree fall weather.

On Sunday afternoon, we went to our 2nd "annual" neighborhood fall party, hosted by our neighbors, the Zinks! We all had a great time. Thank you Brian & Karen!

As you can see, we definitely live in Eagles country ...

I brought the balloon stuff to the party. The kids were all excited until I proceeded to pop just about every balloon I tried to make into an animal! :( Fortunately, Julie has some experience with balloon animal making. She quickly became the balloon artist, while I just blew the balloons up for her. As one little girl (who will remain nameless) said: "Ask Miss Julie to make your animal; Miss Amy pops them all!" :)

Audrey & Emma eating yummy treats. There were LOTS of yummy treats. I don't think many kids ate dinner last night ...

Audrey & her decorated pumpkin.

Carter & Daddy. Carter enjoyed the treats too. They were all on a table RIGHT at his level, so every time I turned around, he was stuffing something else into his mouth ...

Chad gave some of the kids a "hay ride".

The non-haunted haunted house.

The whole group with their pumpkins :) Aren't they an adorable bunch (okay, minus Chad and Brian, aren't they an adorable bunch???)

Hmmm ... more evidence of cupcake snatching...

Making a scarecrow


Carter's favorite use for the hay ...

In summary: A great weekend with family and friends.

But I am now officially pooped...