Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween

Halloween is one of those holidays that has created a lot of tradition and good memories in our family.  

I can't lie - pumpkin carving is no picnic.  But it's fun to take the kids and choose pumpkins.  It's fun to choose a design.  It's fun to clean out the pumpkin (it really is a satisfying feeling to completely gut a pumpkin).  But the actual carving?  Mom and Dad's hands hurt for a few hours afterwards!
But seeing the final product makes it all worth it.  Neither Karen nor I remember carving pumpkins as a kid.  So we're enjoying it now as bigger kids.  Next year, we might let Mark carve his first one.
The costumes are another fun tradition.  It is now requiring a "family council" as the older kids get older.  And next year we might have to move away from the theme.  But for this year, we still pulled it off.  And Karen, as always, did an amazing job with the costumes.  There are a few individual shots below...only because the faces are so darn cute.  And then a couple of group shots.
Karen incorporated the theme into the candy bags, too.  The cops had "evidence" bags and the robbers had money bags.  How cute is this little robber?
I can't help but think of Barney Fife from the Andy Griffith Show when I see Peter and Luke in their cop outfits.  This group was a hit when we brought them to State Farm today.  It brightened up everyone's day.
Here's a group shot of the "Cops and Robbers."  Mark's candy bag was his ball connected to the chain.  And James' was the jail cell he was holding onto.  There was a hole at the top of each of the bars that deposited candy into the compartment below.  Brilliant.  
And we converted the red wagon into a Paddy Wagon.  Luke had Eliza in custody.  She looks angry in the picture below...and Luke looks frightened because he's trapped in there with her! :)
We love these kids so much.  And we enjoy dressing them up each year.  Mark will be 12 next this era may be coming to a close.  We'll see what happens next year.

Hope everyone enjoyed a safe and happy Halloween!

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Peter Michael

It's still birthday season in our family.  Peter is the last of the kids for a couple of months.  He turned 6 last week and enjoyed time with family and friends.
His primary teachers came to pay him a visit.  How sweet are they?!?
Karen and I were in Vegas during his actual birthday (don't conference with pre-determined travel dates).  So Grandma took a picture and emailed it to us.  
We love this kid.  He's super lovable and pure sweetness.  Happy birthday, Peter!!!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Luke Preston

Our sweet little Luke has turned four! I can hardly believe it!
Very excited about birthday presents, does it get any cuter than that?
 This boy loves Leapsters, Legos and Diego.
Cake time! He was very excited about his Captain America cake!
This cake was really easy to frost, but the baking was a challenge. In the end it turned out pretty cool.
 See the cool layers?! Luke thought three colors of cake was pretty cool.