Sunday, October 31, 2010

Halloween 2010

I think we've had weeks of Halloween build-up. I'm glad the day finally arrived! James has his first Halloween celebration at "school" on Friday. His class had a Halloween party and he wore his costume. These are probably the best posed pictures from daycare.

Yup, cheapest Halloween costume ever!

On Saturday we met up with his Tia Kiki for a Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) celebration at the History Center. I'm so glad to start this Mexican tradition with James. He didn't get it this year, and really I'm just learning too, but anything Mexican that I can incorporate into our family culture is nice.

Tonight, the actual Halloween day, we waited until it was dark to gather James up for his big Halloween trick or treating. Actually, we waited until the football game was over and the first trick or treaters signalled the beginning of the night.
One of the first trick or treaters was one of my high school friends and his kids! It caught me by surprise. My friend Joe C. lives in Lino Lakes, I guess, and he was with a HUGE group of kids and adults. The adults were walking but the kids were on a four wheeler trailer with hay bales. It looked like a lot of fun for the kids!
Our front steps:

I didn't realize my camera's flash was off for the first dozen pictures. The pictures get better below.

A neighbor's pumpkin-

Another one-

We had to do many costume adjustments. Yup, wardrobe malfunctions.

One neighbor's house was VERY spooky. Lots of fog, tombstones, a dropping spider...

We were all holding hands and talking about how much fun we were having :)

This pumpkin wasn't feeling so well.
Impressive pumpkins!
James was very proud of his loot! He didn't notice but I emptied half of his pumpkin before it got into the house. I just didn't want him eating it all. I ended up putting it in our candy bowl for the trick or treaters. A three year old doesn't need THAT much candy.
Our pumpkins. Star Wars, of course! R2D2, a tie fighter, and an AT-AT.
"Trick or treat! Smell my feet! Give me something good to eat!" James' friend Russell taught him that at school :)

Saturday, October 9, 2010

We are in love with fall!

It's a beautiful fall. The colors, the weather, OMG. We usually hit a pumpkin patch/farm and we knew this would be the perfect day for it. We started at our breakfast spot, where James wolfed down many pancakes and applesauce. The pumpkin farm opened at 10am and we were there very promptly at 10am.

James started out with smiles! Beautiful, happy smiles.

A friendly cow.

Oooooh! A sandbox with lots of dump trucks. So fun.

Pedal tractors. James sat on one but refused to pedal.

Daddy is a troll!!

Hay maze.

This is when things started to fall apart. James refused to stand by the sign. Fine. It was a big deal to me because he's stood next to this sign for the last few years, and I wanted to make a photo comparison. But then he started to be a little defiant. We carried on.

Excitement to be on the tractor's wagon. We are going to the actual pumpkin patch to find a nice pumpkin!

Yay! James found a perfect little pumpkin. He insisted that we'd make pumpkin pie with it.

I stopped taking pictures after that. James had a little breakdown and we ended up leaving soon after. We went home for lunch and a late nap. The nap did a lot of good.
Lunch: James wanted pumpkin pie. Of course, that little pumpkin was NOT a pie pumpkin. I pretended to cook it but I opened up a can of pumpkin. Sneaky Mommy. I mixed a little pumpkin with Greek yogurt, a little sugar and cinnamon, and then topped it with applesauce. James loved it! I also made a tortilla/turkey sandwich with a pumpkin cookie cutter.

James has been shy about posing with his Bat Hat. I caught him off guard and snapped this picture at lunch.

After lunch we started to decorate the outside of our house with ghosts, a giant spider, spiderwebs, and other little decorations. I love these ghosts. I've always seen them on other houses and not really liked them. James' love of ghosts lately inspired me to buy the package of little ghosts and then decorate the tree with him.

After dinner we wanted to finish our idea of a perfect fall day (breakfast, pumpkin patch, great weather, etc.) with a campfire! And S'mores!

James liked the idea of toasting marshmallows but he didn't want one in his "chocolate sandwich". He ate his plain- just grahams and chocolate. Sounds good to me :)


Thanks for a great day, James :) I'm sorry that you had a tantrum but it happens when you're THREE!

James is a paying customer

At almost four years old James is now a paying customer at the MN Zoo. Our membership expired so we renewed under a different plan because James is over the "Free" age. We're happy to invest in the membership- it will surely pay for itself after just a few visits!

The first stop was the new Russian Coast exhibit. We've been there before but James was definitely more interested in the animals this time.

A bear!

The fall colors were starting to pop!

We stopped at the prairie dogs for a few minutes. James had so much fun watching the little guys do their thing. They were quite funny- rolling around in the dirt, popping up and down in their holes, and nibbling on food.

So interested in the prairie dogs. He refused to call them prairie dogs though.

There's always playground time.

We hopped on the wagon to the Wells Fargo Family Farm. They advertised that they were having a fall festival- with animal scarecrows, a corn maze, and music.

James watched another boy make this pose on the giant pig. He crawled up and did the same.

Yeah, it wasn't a big priority to me to take a picture with this pig. Daddy hopped on though :)

Animal scarecrows.

James all of a sudden hugged this one. It was so cute!

The corn maze.

It wasn't a big maze. I wasn't worried about him running ahead.

After the farm we went to the other playground. I love this one. It has lots of natural settings and pieces to climb on. James loved playing in this "nest".

Before lunch we hopped on the monorail. I don't remember ever going on this EVER and it was really fun to do it with Jim and James. We glided along the treetops and watched the animals.

James loves his Daddy!

Basking in the sun.

James is getting more and more comfortable with the camera. Up and close and personal :)

At the zoo's food court there were so many temptations. After an attempt at a good lunch we did give in and buy James this sucker. We never buy him things like this. It was a good treat. (And I secretly threw it away when he forgot about it. He probably licked that thing off and on for a good hour and then put it down. Later on I wrapped it up and put it in my purse, waiting for him to ask for it again. He never did so TRASH!)

After lunch and the treat we went to the other indoor exhibits. We love these. The Tropics area and the Minnesota Trail.

It was a long, happy day and a nap came quickly in the car, but still clutching the sucker.

It was our anniversary and so we went out to dinner to celebrate at the Cheesecake Factory. James is my son. He loves his carbs too! Mmmm. Bread.

I love my family. I love great, active days like these!