Friday, November 28, 2008


My first attempt at grilling/smoking a turkey was a success! The picture doesn't really do it justice - it tasted great. And I so prefer to cook the bird outside as it frees up the oven for sides. Of course grilling fun was assisted by the wonderful, mild weather we had yesterday.

The kids and I finished decorating before Tim got home from work. The very last box I unpacked had these:

I was really bummed out when I thought I had lost them. They were a gift from Tim's Mom. She always had them in the bathroom when Tim was growing up. He and his brother Pat would rearrange them to spell LEON. The thought of mischievous little boys trying to get their Mom's goat always makes me smile - though I found it funnier before I had one of my own. 

We had an early dinner. The girls were very interested in cooking and helping set the table. I set them loose with the china and silver and am happy to report it is all still intact! They also made us placecards with rainbows and flowers on them. And they actually sat down for the meal which lasted quadruple the length of last year's five minute affair. (E - notsomuch.) I enjoyed their enthusiasm. It really made the day more fun.

Later Tom and Kirsten came by with the kids to hang out for a while saving us from family movie night. Note to self: never rent Space Chimps again. And Ann dropped by after work. I felt a little bad when all we had for her were potatoes and green beans but this is the house of pork after all! The kids chased the cats while we enjoyed a few glasses of wine. It was a perfect end to the day. 

As we cleaned up, Tim and I talked about what we are thankful for and came to the conclusion just about everything: happy marriage, great kids, and wonderful friends and family. Hope this post finds you with lots for which to be thankful too. Happy Thanksgiving!

Thursday, November 27, 2008

So Far.....

Thanksgiving, play by play.

6am: Make Tim's lunch. Check in on Facebook. Realize neighbor Tyler was at Waffle House at 3am.
6:15-6:25am: Entertain the idea of send the children across the street with some sort of holiday treat at a very early hour. 
6:30am: Ultimately reject plan while highly entertaining, likely to result in years of animosity.
7am: Get kids out of bed. Children reject breakfast in favor of decorating for Christmas.
7:10am: Rethink the wisdom of decorating with the kids.
7:50am: Eion breaks ornament Maggie made in preschool leading to his confinement and many tears from Mags.
8:30am: Consider the ethics of drinking alone before 9am. Opt for a Perrier.
8:45am: Kids' hanging of ornaments leads to a seriously bottom heavy tree, much to the kittens' delight.
9am: The Macy's Thanksgiving parade mercifully draws the kids into the other room.
9:45am:  Eion removes all his clothes.
10-11am: Take little artificial trees MIL gave us out and "fluff." Discover the lights on them don't work. Go on to find that the lights are wound around the branches and in knots. Swear under breath as I cut them out for 45 minutes.
11am: Think how smart I am to remember to test lights for deck prior to stringing them.
11:25am: Realize what a nimrod I am when after stringing lights, I am left with the female end and cannot plug them in.
11:30-11:50am: Take down lights on deck and then put them back up properly with the help of my still naked son.
noon: Decorate little trees with the kids. Discover E really has a knack for untangling ornament hooks.
12:30pm: Corral kids for family shower.
1pm: Light Big Green Egg for the first time ever to grill turkey.
1:45pm: Put turkey on grill.
2pm: Break to blog. Back later......

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

Let the Festivities Begin!

In general, I am appalled at the way the start of the Christmas season has inched ever closer to Halloween in a seeming ongoing effort to edge out Thanksgiving altogether. One of the local radio stations switched its format over to 24/7 holiday tunes a full two weeks ago. Now, I am a fan of Christmas music, A Charlie Brown Christmas and the Ramsey Lewis Trio's Sounds of Christmas being my favorites,  BUT when you are playing it non stop for over a month, you really have to dig deep into areas which should be left undisturbed. I think we can all agree that the world would be a better place if we never heard selections from nsync's Home for Christmas again. [Not that I don't still harbor the tiniest little cougar-esque crush on you Justin! Call me!]

That being said, I am all about being practical. The realization that Tim would be at work from 7a-3p on Thanksgiving, nothing would be open and, as we were abandoned by both our families, I would be left home alone with three kids made it clear a contingency plan was needed. Solution: decorate for Christmas. Hence why we were out buying a tree prior to Thanksgiving, a practice on which I typically frown. 

After we picked up the girls from school, the whole circus headed over to Lowe's where we have for years, for a reason I can't quite pin down, purchased our tree. Tim tied it to the roof of the Suburban. Not wanted to be a nag yet unable to help myself I questioned its security there. My fears rebuffed, we started the 2 mile drive home. On the first turn out of the store, we ended up like this:

Tim thought I should help tie it back up but I had priorities - to capture this family moment on film! We tied it up again but almost immediately, it slid to this position:

The children commented on its status all the way home but luckily, it didn't fall off for a second time. When we got it inside, it quickly became clear it was just a wee bit too tall but nothing that couldn't be remedied with some hedge trimmers. 

I'm sure since we are here all weekend, I will be checking in. For my in town readers, feel free to come by for a cocktail. And for all, have a wonderful, safe Thanksgiving!

Monday, November 24, 2008

So Very Very Old

While I was in Maggie's class today, one of her classmates asked her how old I am. She in turn asked me and I told them I was 36. Then the little dear whispered to Maggie, "Wow, she's really old." 

Status Report

SPCA closed on Monday. Foreign kitty still on deck. Children have named it Nibbles.

Sunday, November 23, 2008

Foreign Kitties

Poor sick Tim was at work all day so the kids and I were on our own. After yoga, in what was a crazy/brilliant maneuver, I invited over my friend Ann's three kids. While at first blush six kids would seem like more work than three, in reality it was awesome! They played some sort of game where they were all fairies with different powers. All I know is Ann got to run errands and I planned a Daisy Scout meeting, figured out what food to serve at the upcoming cheesy holiday sweater party and printed my Christmas card labels. 

The one small snag, and you just knew there was one, is the kitty currently chilling on my deck.

At one point Eion and Will were outside playing and E came in toting a kitty. I thought it was one of our own but quickly realized it was some random cat. I have spent the rest of the day strongly encouraging the kids not to play with said kitty while they have ignored my warnings of ringworm and rabies and generally made said K feel right at home. And when they finally tired of it, I still have them reminding me of its homeless plight, "Look! The foreign kitty is on the deck!" or "Let's take Midnight to the window to make friends!" So not only am I leaving the cat in the cold, my kids are showing it how well fed and warm it could be. 

While I have never felt my marriage is unstable, bringing a third cat into the mix might just be a deal breaker so if you know of anyone looking for a kitty, lob me an email. 

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Family Day

Had a great day with the family today. We took the kids to the Taubman Museum of Art which opened recently here in Roanoke. It has a fairly progressive design and despite my initial distaste, I find very cool and a wonderful addition to downtown. 

The kids enjoyed the exhibits but naturally were mostly interested in the gift shop. Morrigan brought her wallet and was kind enough to share with her sister so they both bought little souvenirs. We were just happy that there was some distance between us and the art so we could stop saying "Don't touch that!" over and over.

Overall, I was very impressed with the museum. I thought the space was fantastic and should attract great traveling art collections. 

Tim and I had a sitter all lined up so we could have date night but he was feeling a bit under the weather so opted for family movie night instead. We rented Wall-E, popped some corn and curled up in front of the fire together. The kids liked the love story aspect, well except for E who mostly liked when Eve blew things up. Tim and I appreciated the underlying message. Produce less waste. Connect with your community. Reject the sedentary lifestyle. 

Overall rating: great day. You just can't beat 90 minutes of snuggle time with the kids on the couch before bed.


What do you get when you set the kids loose with the camera? Lots of kitty pictures.

Friday Night Lights

Ok so I didn't play football last night but we did go to the Club's mixed doubles tennis social. Now my tennis game has been, well, crappy pretty much since I started playing. I watched as those who started playing around the same time advanced while I was always the lowest common denominator. But this fall, for reasons unknown, I managed to improve! So I finally felt ready to go to one of these socials. The first set we played Ann and Hans who while generally still better than me, did not lay a crushing beat down on us as history would have indicated they would. 

I was feeling pretty good. Then we were rearranged and Tim and I were partnered with people WAY out of our league. As I watched them fire serves all I could think is how they were going to totally tee off on my in bounds but completely powerless serve. We were happy to make it out of the game injury free. But we had a great time and certainly the beers afterwards at the Fork made it all worthwhile.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Let it Snow!

We awoke to what can only be described as a dusting of snow. The children's reaction was markedly different from my own. I immediately feared for my morning of tennis. It takes almost no snow to cancel school here and sometimes the forecast of bad weather is enough. It seems rather silly to a gal from Detroit where school was never closed but they say they have to worry about safety. Jeesh.

The kids, on the other hand, were completely psyched. They wanted to build a snowman. When it was explained that really wasn't a possibility, they darted out to the deck to eat the snow. Naturally, it melted before noon which was not ok with E who came home and started sobbing, "Make the snow again!"

Facebook: The Greatest Thing Ever or Time Sucking Vortex From Which I Will Never Return

So about a year ago, Kirsten told me I had to get a Facebook account. I did, mostly to humor her but didn't really see the point. Very shortly thereafter, an old friend from high school found me. And then another. Soon I felt like it was 1989 all over again! 

I went to the American School of Paris for three years in high school and after we graduated, everyone moved all over the world. We didn't have a common hometown where we all saw each other at the holidays.  The reunions are different too as they are not held for a particular year and tend to be in big cities do not everyone can make it to the same one. I wrote a few people (communication in the days before email - what a pain in the arse) but over the years lost touch with most. 

Now I have found most of the people with whom I went to school (or they found me). A few days ago someone posted a whole pile of old pictures which were hilarious. I was inspired to drag out the old scrapbooks and commence to scanning. After the kids went to bed last night, I think I spent 2 hours uploading pics from high school (like the beauty above!) 

I woke up this morning to all the comments on the pictures. I find myself wanting to search the pics again to see if I missed any good ones. And look at my friends' friend lists to find more friends. It's beginning to border on addiction.

Monday, November 17, 2008


I volunteered in Maggie's class this morning. They had a sub who wasn't expecting me so I had a little more down time than normal during which the children regaled me with tales from home. 

One boy told me all about how his babysitter's boyfriend had a drinking problem. How do you respond to that? I went with the generic "Mmmhm." 

Next a little girl (whose parents are divorced) informed of  me how Mommy wanted her to ask Daddy for more money since they never had enough. Before I had to reply, Maggie said "Why doesn't she just ask him herself when he gets home from work?" Good save Mags.

Saturday, November 15, 2008

30 Minutes and Counting....

until the babysitter arrives. Thank god that after my original sitter cancelled, Kirsten was able to find me a replacement. I have heard there are people who choose to be single parents. Really, after a day like today, I can't fathom why. It was a trying day to say the very least. I can't imagine an interminable string of these with no hope of back up. My children clearly are done with me as well. When the sitter cancelled, they asked, horrified, "You are going to find another one aren't you?" Now they are asking every two minutes or so, "When is the babysitter finally going to get here?" Not soon enough for my tastes either.

Our scene was not at all assisted by the rain today. Maggie was scheduled to go to a birthday party at the park today. First off, who plans an outdoor party in November with no back up plan? I realize we are in Virginia but it's getting chilly. Unwilling to drag three kids to the park in the mud and rain (incidentally, the park next to the river that routinely floods when it rains) I bribed my kids with cake at home. Hence this was an integral part of lunch:

Though as the day wears on, I think I would prefer mud and rain to being in this house. 21 minutes to go....

Field Trip

Morrigan's class went on a field trip to see some play this week. The night before, as we were picking out clothes for the next day, things went down like this:

Morrigan: Arrgh! I have no fancy clothes. How can I go to the theater in these? [Motioning dramatically to closet.]
Me: What about one of these six dresses?
Morrigan: They are all too plain. I am ruined! How will people possibly know how beautiful I am?

At this point, I leave to see if there is a summer "gown" in my closet that might be paired with a sweater. I came across a red velvet dress we picked up at the Goodwill which I had to hide from Morrigan because she kept wearing it in 90 degree weather. I return triumphantly with my find.

Me: Is this fancy enough?
Morrigan: Oh it is perfect! But you know I can't wear a everyday coat with this. I'll need something special....

Visitation Week

As we drove up to Maggie's ballet class this week, the packed parking lot reminded me that it was the dreaded visitation week. For many parents, this is a chance to see the progress their little darlings have made. For me, it is 45 minutes to an hour of trying to snap pictures and smile encouragingly at the performing child while pinning down Eion as he tries to escape or join in the dancing (doing a comical freestyle dance which I found amusing but the legion of video-taping uber-parents did not) and telling whichever girl is not performing that day to sit still and watch her sister. 

Anyhoo, Maggie's class was very cute. There even seem to be some older 5 year olds so she doesn't completely tower over everyone. They are mostly prancing around in their tutus but at that age are just darling.

And then there is Morrigan's class. They have started to get, well, awkward. And seriously, I am not sure I have seen a class with so little coordination ever. I thought it might just be me but one of the other Moms I know felt the same way. This is going to be a great recital! I am hoping Morrigan develops some skills. She has the appendages of a dancer. It seems such a shame to have them wasted on someone who seems ready to topple over at any moment.

But on the plus side, both girls really seem to like it. And clearly, we could use some practice in the grace department.

Good News/Bad News

The bad news is I have two kids running low grade fevers, one of whom has a nasty sounding cough as well. While I was suspicious that it would be unscrupulous to take them to the gym, I ran it by our personal ER doc (naturally at work all weekend) and he concurred tat 99.8 degrees had to stay home. 

Good news is I should be able to clean the basement and do some much needed catch up on the blog! Many posts forthcoming....

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Dear Santa

I have a very OCD need to be finished with my Christmas shopping early. My quest is greatly assisted by the fact that Tim and I don't exchange gifts and we generally only get token gifts for the other adults in the family. We decided about 10 years ago that we could all buy most anything we wanted (and if we couldn't, that item was probably out of gift range anyway) so we get small items but keep it low stress.

We don't go overboard for the kids but I do like to find an item or two they really want and make sure we have that under the tree. I asked them what they wanted Santa, who is still alive and well in our house, to bring them. Eion replied simply, "Guns." While I know there are no weapon households, I am ok with that request. $20 at Target and we are done with E.

Next the girls each asked for a particular Webkinz animal (with shipping $13 each.) I tried to get more requests out of them but they said, "That's all we need." 

While the cheap in me is thrilled with the $50 Christmas, I am pleased with the fact that we may have succeeded, at least for now, in teaching our kids that materialism won't make you happy. And that they are not overly concerned with being consumers. [We are constantly reminding them that they are not allowed to watch commercials since they don't want "the man" telling them what to buy.] 

Or maybe they just don't need anything since they are seriously spoiled by their Grandparents.

Monday, November 10, 2008

My Darling Son

As I was reveling in the joys of my new computer while my darlings were eating dinner, Eion came in to ask for scissors with dinner. Why anyone needs scissors with dinner is beyond me but the request did lead to a brief but colorful argument with my son. During which he picked off the scab from his upper lip (from that run in with the treadmill last week) and right before my eyes, ate it. There are no words.

Back on Track

I've been offline for a few days as we received our new iMac in the mail but were not able to set it up until yesterday. My old computer, after nearly eight years of service, has finally been retired. I'm loving the new one but it is sucking up massive amounts of time as I have to set up addresses, iTunes etc. In the end, I think it will be way better. I have been a PC gal for years but after Tim got his Apple laptop, have converted. 

So in addition to the new computer, we were way busy this weekend. Friday, Ann and Hans found themselves kidless so we went to dinner. After, we met up with Tom & Kirsten who were out celebrating their 10th anniversary.

Downtown was packed for the grand opening of the Taubman Museum of Art so it was a great night to be out. We considered attending but it was $500 per couple and we were just too cheap!

Saturday we were hosting our Cocktail Club so basically the entire day was devoted to getting ready. The work was well worth it as we had a great turnout of friends and had an awesome time. 

I was, however, a bit perplexed by my dress. Have you ever seen a celebrity's picture and thought, "How are they wearing that? Did they not look in a mirror?" After Saturday, I will have to give those celebrities a bit more leeway. I wore a dress I bought it last winter that I love but hadn't gotten to wear yet. Got compliments all night (and the next day) on it. Then I looked at my pictures. The damn thing photographed horribly! I look pregnant and the flash hit it funny making it look like it was pulling oddly as witnessed in this picture:

I showed the pictures to a friend I knew would be honest with me and asked if I really looked like that because then I would know to retire said dress. She said no and suggested cropping out the bottom - excellent idea!

Clearly, can only wear it in the absence of cameras. After we were down to only a couple of people left, we played drunken Rock Band, at which I was very bad. And Leigh Anne got a hold of my camera and took many many unflattering pictures that will never be seen by the outside world. This was the least offensive but serves as a great reminder that one should really wear pants when drumming!

Luckily they were sitting behind me. 

Sunday, I felt way better than I deserved. Tim was highly motivated to paint our basement which at some point was painted a hideous shade of forest green. While the new paint color does not correct the ugliest carpet in the world problem, it does make the basement bearable. (Before an after pics later.) The basement is in the neighborhood of 600 square feet, finished, dry and has 12 foot ceilings. It seems a waste not to use it more so we're planning to get some furniture and a big tv down there soon. 

After we finished up, we fled our still pretty messy house (a party of 50+ people makes allot of barware to wash) and went to Tom & Kirsten's for a yummy dinner. 

In a good news/bad news turn of events, Eion is home sick which messes up my plans for the day but will make me clean the house and finish setting up the computer!

Friday, November 07, 2008

E Loves B

Eion for a reason not yet clear to me, replaces many letters with the letter B. For example:

bajamas = pajamas
buitar = guitar

I can't find a pattern. But in the pursuit of a relentlessly positive attitude, we chose to see this as his ticket into the pre-K program next year since it seems he may just be in speech therapy.

In other Eion news....As you can see above, his face is a little jacked up after a run-in with a treadmill. But it looks way better than it did last week. He has also been asking his teacher daily to come home with him and play Rock Band. Maybe she would if he behaved better. He fell all the way off the tree today and not only did he not have his listening ears on, his report said he had no listening ears. Can't say home has been better. He's currently screaming in his room because I wouldn't give him all the Halloween candy. Poor boy.

Thursday, November 06, 2008

Election is Over, Now Let's Get to Work Conservatives

Oh I am all full of disclaimers today. First, I am feeling especially ranty today so I might be a wee bit long winded. Second, I am in a political mood. I feel I need to warn y'all when I am about to write about something other than my love of bargains and obnoxious children (who I love too - slightly more than the bargains.) So, you have been given notice. Feel free to leave now but if you choose to come along, don't send me a bunch of comments trying to convince me I am wrong. I won't read them anyway.

What got me thinking was a conversation I had with my Mom yesterday. She said this was the first election in a long time that she felt really good about because she thought both candidates would be fine Presidents. My response to her was that was funny because when McCain got the Republican nomination, my first thought was sh*t, I don't have anyone to vote for since there are two liberals running. I've had people ask how it feels to live in a blue state and how I feel about losing. My response is that Republicans lost Tuesday. Conservatives lost long before that.

So here is my suggestion to the Republican party. If you want to regain power, stop caring what the media and the left think of you and start acting like Conservatives again. Yes, that is exactly what I just wrote. Go back and read it again. Republicans have lost their way playing to the center and trying to gain favor with liberals. When Conservatives run on conservative platforms, they win. A perfect example is Proposition 8 in California. Prop 8 is about as far right as you can get. And it passed in California which is about as liberal as you can get. [OK - stop with the gay rights hate mail you were about to send me right now. My brother is gay and I personally voted against Virginia's same sex marriage ban. I'm just using this as an example of a very conservative measure succeeding in a very liberal environment.]

Back on point, what the right needs to do is stop trying to mask their conservatism. Stop apologizing for wanting to lower taxes. Be proud of the fact that you are in favor of free enterprise and less government regulation. Let people know that you think charity and assisting the needy are best done by private individuals and organizations rather than a Socialistic redistribution of wealth by the government. Come right out and demand smaller government. (Seriously, after one interaction with either the DMV or the IRS tell me with a straight face that you think government can do anything in an efficient manner.) Don't be ashamed of the fact that you think people need to be responsible for their own future and stop waiting for the government to bail out everything under the sun.

So let's go Conservatives! We've got two years until the mid-term elections. Let's get some viable candidates who will promote conservative values without apology and pandering to the left wing. I'm happy to do that as a Republican, but if they can't come around, we should leave. Go Libertarians!

Wednesday, November 05, 2008

School Pictures

I am convinced that the school employs photographers who are blind. It must be some sort of outreach program. How else can you explain the fact that my kids, who you know are just lovely, take pictures like this:

Morrigan looks possessed. And the braid she insisted on wearing is coming apart. Maggie's looks good at first blush til you realize she has food all over her chin. Could no one give the girl a tissue? To add insult to injury, they charge a small fortune for these as it is a "fund raiser." Well I am done with them. Next year, we are not ordering any.

But on a much happier and completely unrelated note, this morning at tennis clinic, my partner and I laid a 7 game beat down on our opponents. This, quite literally, never happens to me. I have to say, the game is much more fun when you win!

E's New Coat

So as always when Maggie is at ballet, Eion, Morrigan & I headed to Goodwill to hunt for treasure. We found a few items and were on our way to check out when I saw a darling grey wool pea coat that looked like it was E's size. Picked it up and sure enough it was. It also had the name of the previous owner written on the size tag who just happened to be one of Maggie's friends. I'm not entirely sure why but I briefly considered putting it back before my sense of frugality overtook me and I realized I couldn't pass up a $2 coat. So when the previous owner sees it and thinks, my son had a coat just like that, you are right. Just like that!

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Voting vs Boating

The girls were very excited about going with me to vote. They were a bit put out that they themselves did not get to vote. They suggested I cast several ballots some of which would be on their behalf which led to a spirited discussion on the concept of voter fraud. Eion did not enjoy the trip at all as he thought we were going boating as opposed to voting. He was in favor of the former.

Monday, November 03, 2008

Overheard at Panera

While overall, my kids were very well behaved at Panera for lunch on Sunday, I think we amused and possibly irritated the other patrons.....

Morrigan: Mommy, that boy is knitting.
Me: Yes, he is.
Morrigan: Boys don't knit.
Me: Clearly, they do as he is knitting.
Morrigan: No, it is like sewing. Boy don't do those things. Mommies do.
Me: Uncle Dominick sews so really, boys can sew or knit if they want.
Morrigan: Doesn't he have a Mommy to do it for him?

Eventually, I managed to shut down this line of conversation. Shortly thereafter, Eion finished his lunch and commenced to meowing. Loudly. As if he were in heat. For the duration of our visit.

Sunday, November 02, 2008

Queen of the Nile Indeed

I nearly forgot, two of Morrigan's friends were also Cleopatra this year. They had the same outfit and Morrigan's was different. As soon as she saw them, my darling daughter let them know, "You can be my servants!" Nice.

Trick or Treat

Friday was jam packed with Halloween fun. First off was the "Trunk or Treat" at Eion's school. Truth be known, I find this activity pointless. My understanding was these things started in neighborhoods where it might be unsafe to go door to door and provided a controlled Halloween environment. As we literally know every single person at the homes at which we trick or treat, we clearly don't need it. But people seem to be dying for one more opportunity to sugar up the kids so we went. E refused to wear his costume. The little girls in his class were baffled and tried to reason with him. He simply responded, "I not." So we just told everyone he was a conscientious objector.

Later was the Kindergarten Halloween party. They all bring their costumes to school and go on a parade through the other classrooms. Maggie's teacher told them not to pay attention if the older kids said something unkind. This would not be a problem with our 2nd grader as she asked to be a part of the parade too. When they returned to the room we had a snack and played Spooky Bingo. Poor Mags didn't win and when I looked over, her eyes were all glossy with tears. She didn't give much weight to my argument that the prizes were just items from the $1 section at Target.

After school it was back home to get ready for the night's activities. First, we went over to our neighbor's house. Since we live on a cul de sac with houses spread out and lots of hills we are their only visitors. Jen and Tyler are nice enough to make the kids cute little individual treat buckets. And my kids love to visit their daughter.

Then we were off to see their Roanoke Grandma, Connie. She gets a few more trick or treaters since she is down on the "grid" but invites us by to start out our night. Veering off track for just a minute...her sister, who is blind and mentally retarded, lives with her. The next day at the gym, the girls made art projects with fluffy craft balls. They told me they wanted to take them to Marion because she could enjoy it even though she can't see because she could feel the balls. Made me proud that at a time of year when there is a great deal of emphasis on getting that they thought about giving.

We then met up with many other friends at Sippycups' house where the Martha she is, had a fantastic mashed potato bar and hot toddies for all. The kids played while we ate and socialized. I could have just stayed there all night. But the pleas to start trick or treating became too much and everyone dispersed to their desired routes. We have been going to the same area for about 5 years now. It is a great two street loop with one in the shape of a U and the other street connecting either end of the 1st street. It has just enough houses and no pesky side streets down which kids could wander.

We had a group of about 7 families all going together which made for one rowdy mob of kids.

And we know most of the residents of the street so empty traveller cups were never a problem! Eion lost steam first so he and I went back to our friends' house to wait for Maggie and Morrigan to finish. They finally returned with bags so full I literally don't think another piece of candy would have fit. Morrigan commented that her bag was so heavy that she had to carry it with both hands.

As the Halloween marathon marched on, we went to a little carnival at the girls' school the next day. While I understand it was a fundraiser, I did find it over priced for what it was and could have done without one more round of candy. But Tim was working and I was taking entertainment where I could find it. Hans is out of town so Ann and I combined forces to keep the kids busy. After all that, I was so glad it was fall back last night. I really needed that extra hour of sleep!