Trick or Treat!
We had a great Halloween! The
festivities kicked off on Beggar's Night (West Des Moines'
trick-or-treat night) on Oct. 30. It was a beautiful over-60-degree
night, and the girls had a blast!
The girls were very excited to go trick-or-treating. They
picked out their costumes months ago... Jenna decided to be
Shawn Johnson, and Emma decided to be an Iowa Hawkeye cheerleader.
Our little Hawkeye
And our little Olympian. Jen even created a Shawn Johnson-themed
trick for trick-or-treating... She did a gymnastics jump,
then a safety stop, and "finish." :-) Her costume
(and Jenna) were definitely hits!
Our neighbors hold an annual pre-trick-or-treat party, with
food and snacks. Over 100 people were there this year. Thanks,
A shot of the party
Jenna, Emma and Ryleigh
Jenna and Madisen
After a quick bite, we finally convinced Troy it was time
to pick his beloved pumpkin. ...I think Troy's allegiance
to that pumpkin could have rivaled Linus's in "It's a
Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown." :-)
Picking the pumpkin
The girls with the pumpkin
Right after that, Troy found a wooly bear caterpillar on our
porch — just like the one we'd seen at the apple orchard
a month before!
We moved the little guy to the grass
FINALLY, it was time to trick-or-treat. The girls, Joe and
I headed out, and Troy stayed home and handed out Play-Doh
to all the kids.
Joe was excited to go out trick-or-treating, too. He got to
see a lot of other dogs, and even made his mom "proud"
by leaving a "deposit" on our new neighbor's yard
while I was talking to her! Ugh! Thank goodness she had a
dog, too, and understood! (And, thank goodness I had a plastic
bag with me for "clean-up.") :-)
Jenna's Halloween Parade
Jenna's school had its annual
Halloween parade on Oct. 31.
The two Shawn Johnsons – Jenna and her friend, Claire
– waiting for the parade to start. Aren't they cute?
FINALLY, the parade starts. :-)
The kids trick-or-treating
Troy and Jenna, after the parade
Jenna and me, after the parade
Jenna with her friends Max and Claire, after the parade
All the kids, heading back to school after the parade
Jenna and some of her classmates after the parade
Jenna with her friends, Molly and Max
Emma's Halloween Party
Emma's class Halloween party
was also on Oct. 31.
For the craft activity, the kids each got to decorate a gourd
or mini-pumpkin. Emma made hers look like her, with googly
eyes, blonde hair, a drawn-on nose and mouth — and pink-pipe-cleaner
hair bow! :-)
Troy and Emma, at her party
Emma and her friend, Megan, making their party snack —
Ding Dong spiders!
Emma and me at her party
Emma plays one of the party games
Emma and her teacher, Mrs. Seiler — whom she ADORES!
The second graders
Silly second graders
The kids listen to a story before heading home
We're Off to See the Wizard...
We headed to Grimes on Halloween
night, to hang out with our friends and let the kids trick-or-treat
(again). The six of us dressed up as Wizard of Oz characters,
which was SO much fun! The weather was perfect, too. It was
70 degrees, and (except for Dawn/Dorothy) we were actually
hot in our costumes! Who would have thought?!
Troy was the Tin Man, I was Glinda the Good Witch, John was
the scarecrow, Dawn was Dorothy, their dog Kodi was Toto,
Jenny was the Wicked Witch, and Pete was the Cowardly Lion.
We were amazed at how many random people stopped us to take
our photo... I think it happend four or five times. One little
girl — who was dressed as Dorothy — even had her
photo taken with us. When she first saw us she said, "Mommy,
there are the REST of them!
More of the gang
Troy and I with the girls, before heading out trick-or-treating
We tried to get a cute picture of all the kids, but our girls
had other ideas. Emma had some issue with where she was standing
(or something "serious" like that), and I have no
idea what made Jenna cry.
Emma put on a smiling face, but Jenna... not so much!
Max gave Jenna a kiss to make her feel better
Dawn, John and Kodi
Troy with his manly plastic axe. ;-) ...Seriously, he got
the most attention of all of us. The kids really seemed to
like his costume.
Me as Glinda, the Good Witch
Jenny and Pete
The kids trick-or-treating
The guys kind of felt silly going out dressed as the Wizard
of Oz characters... until they got free beer! ;-) John liked
telling people the rest of the night how he trick-or-treated
Troy, very serious with his beer. (He didn't want to smile.
He said showing his teeth "took away" from the silverness
of his face... or something like that.)
Taking a break from trick or treating, at Dawn and John's
house. Mmmmmm.... icee pops!
After trick-or-treating, the boys built a great fire. We were
all so tired, I think we all almost fell asleep around it!
Our Crazy Girls
Emma had quite the outfit and
hair for her dress crazy day at school on Oct. 28.
Check out the 'do
Emma working the crazy, mismatched look
Even her shoes were mismatched
Jenna wasn't dressed quite as crazy, but was just as cute,
Our two cuties
Taking it Easy...
Troy and the girls relaxed while
watching a show on Oct. 26.
Our Little Pumpkins
Our little pumpkins showed off
some of our other pumpkins on Oct. 19.
The pumpkins at our house
Jenna told me, "I wanted to RUIN the photo." ...Do
you think it had been a long day for a certain little girl,
who was also tired and hungry? ;-)
We planted some pumpkin seeds this spring... a little later
than we probably should have. The vines just really started
producing pumpkins in the past few weeks, and this one —
on a vine that had grown around the corner of the house —
is our biggest pumpkin.
We decided to try out my new
camera (a great 10th anniversary present from Troy) to take
some family photos on Oct. 19. It was a beautiful, 72 degree
day, and took photos at Brookview
Park and Walnut
Woods State Park.
On Oct. 18, Emma — along
with some of the older Kingdom Quest (fka Sunday School) kids
at church — sang "Your
Grace is Enough"... in front of the approximately
1,000 people who were at the service. (The kids just found
out they'd be singing for the service THAT NIGHT. ...Talk
about a surprise!) She said it was the "best night ever"
and that she "loved" singing in front of everyone!
SO proud of her!
Our Tenth Anniversary
On Oct. 17, Troy and I celebrated
our 10th wedding anniversary, with a fabulous (and kid-free)
dinner at Greenbriar.
We enjoyed some great 80-degree
weather Oct. 11.
Troy and the girls fed the fish at Jordan
Creek Town Center some of our lunch leftovers
Grandma Reed liked feeding the fish, too
Grandma took the girls shopping after feeding the fish
While the other three were shopping, Troy and I took my mom's
BMW convertible out for a spin
for a spin
Jenna went to her friend Molly's
princess birthday party on Oct. 10, dressed as Cinderella.
Our littlest princess
Both of our princesses
Emma was pretty excited out her latest Webkinz, Lesley...
which I think is #14 in her collection
Jenna had school pictures on
Oct. 9. She had a special photo taken with her two best friends,
Hattie (a fellow Hawkeye fan) and Max (a Cyclone fan). Both
girls dressed as Hawkeye cheerleaders, and Max dressed as
a Cyclone football player – and they had their photo
taken giving Max a kiss on the cheek. ...Very cute!
Jenna wanted curly hair, so we put her hair in buns the night
...And, boy, did she ever have curly hair!
...And, if you take Jenna's photo, you have to take Emma's,
Jenna also had her photo taken with her good friends, Max
Max doesn't seem to mind getting double-teamed by the Hawkeye
The Girls at Gymnastics
The girls had a great time, as
always, at gymnastics
on Oct. 9.
The girls, before class
Jenna doing her bridges, with her coach, Miss Jen...
...And, Emma doing her bridges (in her pink sparkly leotard,
of course), with her coach, Josh. Emma is quick to tell you
that her bridges are higher than anyone else in her class!
Jenna doing warm-ups and stretches with her class
Jenna (second from back) waits for instructions on the trampoline
Emma sticks her vault landing... and learned from her coach
after this that, as she told me later, "girls do their
finishes (landings) with their palms OUT." :-)
Modified pike off the vault. (I'm sure there's an official
name for her jump, but that's about as good as my description
is going to get. Ha!) And, in the foreground of the photo
is U.S. Women's Olympic Coach Liang
Jenna going backwards on the balance beam
Jenna on the big beam, with Miss Jen
Jen's big finish
Emma doing some floor work
Emma listens to some instructions from Josh on the beam
Jenna does bear walks on the parallel bars
Jenna jumps into the pit
Jenna is line leader, as her class heads to door floor work.
(Notice her big sister watching in the background?)
Jenna waits to work on her floor work.
Coach Josh helps Emma on the bar
Emma on the bar, all by herself!
Emma does pull-ups on the parallel bars
Jenna shows off the stamp she got on her hand after finishing
class. (She was a little excited, can you tell? She
It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown!
We spent a great morning at the
Family Orchard on Oct. 4. They have an amazing organic
apple orchard, pumpkin patch and farm. Plus, it's a phenomenally
beautiful place, very near the Racoon River valley. ...All-in-all,
a wonderful place to spend a Fall day!
Emma and Jenna check out the hens and roosters
Jenna in the barn
These two little guys were Jenna's favorite part of the day!
Jenna spent forever playing with and watching the kitties...
it was very sweet
One of the goats really liked Troy. Maybe I should have been
a little jealous? ;-)
Troy and Jenna check out both goats. ...All the animals were
obviously very well cared for and happy, with lots of grass
to eat and room to roam.
The girls painted gourds
The four of us
Troy and the girls played bean-bag toss
After getting mad at the game (because she was having a hard
time getting her bean bag in the apple's mouth), Jenna took
a little break
Jenna in the organic orchard
Emma in the orchard
Troy and the girls
Jenna found this caterpillar, and was very, very gentle with
it. One of the guys working at the farm said it was a Wooly
Bear – and that, according to superstition, the
wider its brown band, the longer the winter. Then he said,
"Judging by this guy, we're going to have a LONG winter!"
The girls on the hayrack ride
All of us getting ready for the ride
Troy and Emma on the hay ride
Jenna and me on the hay ride
Jenna having a great time...
Jenna having an even BETTER time, going down a hill ;-)
The girls, running to the pumpkin patch
Our little pumpkins... Aren't they cute?
The girls eached picked out a pumpkin, and helped picked one
for Troy, Joe and me
"Too many decisions..."
Troy hauls our pumpkins back to the scale
All pumpkin'd out
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