Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Halloween Before & After

This year we had a singer, Captain America, & Rapunzel.
We were joined by a pirate girl, a ballerina, & a giraffe (not in the picture).
(Their family is still without power so they all came over for dinner, trick-or-treating, and SHOWERS!)
After:  CANDY!!!!!!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Hurricane Sandy Survival

You would think this post would be about how we managed to stay alive and well despite the whipping winds and monsoon-like rain that submerged the east coast over the past few days.  But no. 

I certainly don't want to downplay the importance of this storm and how devastating it has been to some people.  Just looking at photos of one of our favorite vacation spots, Ocean City, made me so sad.  And I have been praying for everyone who has been affected by the storm.

Well, for us the storm ended up being not so bad after all.  I had gathered up our flashlights and candles and non-perishable food.  I had filled up water pitchers (although Chad told me that we didn't really need to since we are on borough water and they have generators and back-up systems....)  But fortunately we did not even lose power!  Wow, was I thankful for that.  We lost power last winter for about a day and it was rough. 

So our "survival" quickly turned from getting through the keeping 3 kids occupied and happy!  We ended up having a fun time!

First, we made Halloween cookies.

 We also played games, watched TV, ate popcorn (& ahem, cookies...), and tried to keep up with the storm coverage.

Chad spent lots of time watching the barometric pressure drop, taking photos of our barometer, and posting the results on facebook.  Frustrated meteorologist! :)
Today my pumpkins carved their pumpkins.
Well, they designed, I carved. :)
  I think we are all ready for Halloween now!
  I know Chloe is!!
Bring on the parties and trick or treating!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Hurricane Conversations

Tonight we were driving home from my parents' house and we had this winner conversation as it drizzled outside:

Audrey:  Mom, is it "hurricane-ing" yet?

Me:  Well, Audrey, the edge of the storm is just reaching us so we are just getting a little rain now.  But tomorrow we should  have a lot more heavy rain and wind.

Chloe:  I'm scared of the huwicane.

Me:  You don't need to be scared.  We'll be home together and safe. 

Carter:  What?  There's a hurricane???  Where?

Everyone else in the car:  UGHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHHH!!!!

Audrey:  Carter!  Duh!!

Carter:  What? 

I am laughing out loud just thinking about this.  It is so us.  Audrey coining new words.  Chloe saying she's scared.  Carter clueless about what's going on.....

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Leaf pile fun

We don't have too many big trees in our yard, but our neighbors do! 
So I feel a little guilty, but while they were busy raking and blowing their leaves to the curb -- well, I was busy taking pictures of all the kids having fun in the leaves. :)




Friday, October 26, 2012


We just got back from Disney last weekend.

What a wonderful time we had!  I have about eighty bajillion photos but I posted half a bajillion photos on fb so I think I will limit it to just a few here.  What I really want to blog about is  some of my reflections from our week in Florida....the things I want to remember 5 years from now.

*  The kids did SO WELL.  They are getting a bit "older" so it was much easier to travel with them this time around.  No diapers, no waking up all night with them wondering where they are, no having to dash out of restaurants with antsy toddlers, .no okay, few meltdowns, ...I feel like we can finally start enjoying traveling more.  Because the last 5 years have not been easy travel years! ;)
 *  My MIL and I took Chloe & Audrey to a princess breakfast in Epcot.  It was so nicely done and I loved watching Chloe with the princesses.  As expected, she was shy at first but warmed up to them pretty quickly.  I thought for sure that Chloe would want to wear her princess dress so I brought it but she refused to wear it!!  Oh well.  It was a really fun time, dress or no dress.
*  Our favorite rides:  I think the favorite for all of us was the Rock-n-Rollercoaster in Hollywood Studios!  Other favorites:  Everest, Kali River Rapids, Safari (all from Animal Kingdom); Winnie-the-Pooh, Astro Orbiter, Barnstormer (Magic Kingdom); Toy Story Mania, Tower of Terror (Hollywood Studios); Soarin' & Mission: Space (Epcot).  We really like our rides.  Even Carter & Audrey rode every single rollercoaster and "big" ride that they could.  Carter in particular has no fear.  That must come from the Smith side of the family because when I was young I was scared to ride the big rides!
 *  Best shows:  Finding Nemo & The Lion King shows at Animal Kingdom were very creative and kept all the kids attention from start to finish; Philharmagic at Magic Kingdom was an unexpectedly fun and creative 3D show;  the girls & I enjoyed the stage show of Beauty & the Beast at HS; Captain EO at Epcot (just kidding....that show is still awful after all these years, but there were still people in the audience cheering when MJ came onscreen....I don't get it).  Of course, the Electric Parade and Wishes fireworks shows at MK were amazing too.
*  At Epcot there are some fountains that would water randomly from one fountain to another.  Carter is STILL talking about this being his favorite part of vacation.  :)
* We brought in our lunches but every afternoon we took a Mickey popsicle break.  :)

*  The kids had just as much fun on our "off" days -- swimming at the pool.

*  I am SO glad we took our sit-n-stand stroller.  If only it were bigger so I could have gotten in at the end of a long day....
 * We had a lot of fun looking for "Hidden Mickeys"!

*  Whoever came up with the idea for fast passes is a genius.  There is something psychologically gratifying about walking past all the other people waiting in line and getting right on!

* On Friday (our last park day), we were getting ready to go....walking down Main Street toward the entrance of Magic Kingdom.  I looked back at Cinderella's castle and yes - I got teary eyed.   It truly is a magical place, even for grown-ups.  Usually I am ready to go home after a vacation but this is one of the first vacations in a long time where I really didn't want to leave yet. :(

*  We all made some very special memories with Chad's parents.  I am so glad that we could go with them and enjoy such a fun vacation together.

It'll probably a number of years before we get to go Mickey & Minnie Mouse, we will miss you but I hope we can see you again some day in the not TOO distant future!