Halloween 2013

 We celebrated Halloween with a fun witch party and lots of trick or treaters. 

It started earlier in the week with the annual Sew & Sews Witch party. I was on the committee with Lesa, Shari and Kristan. Lesa created a darling table setting with wonderful centerpieces, orange soda place settings and "bugs & hugs in a tube" favors. 

We wore our "costumes" to exercise on Halloween morning because we knew Greg would be doing his legendary Halloween workout and we wanted to be dressed up. We did a lot of reps lifting these medicine ball pumpkins. 
Our first trick or treater was little Emmett in his SWAT team costume.
 And then new baby in her kitty suit. She just sleeps through all the excitement.
  Here's Becky and kids with their Grewe cousins.

SepteMber BirThdays

Looking through photos from the past few months and realizing that we had LOTS of (fun) stuff this summer. For example...in our immediate family, in seven weeks' time, we have nine birthdays. That's out of 17 of us...nearly half. The birthdays start in early August and continue until mid-October. 

The first in the string of birthdays is little Claire, above.




...and the celebrations end with Emmett! 


< keeping quiet >

I get a few e-newsletters in my inbox. I really try to limit what I allow, because I hold on to words like nothing will ever be published again. My email folders tend to bulge. I do allow about ten people to make it into my daily or weekly read, and one of them is Jennifer Louden. Visit her blog here. This article is called "But This Will Make You Happier." Any of her blog posts will be pretty entertaining if you want to read on. She writes about self care, accepting yourself, and serving others.

She tells about a time when she was hiking and listening to the conversation of some other people on the trail. A younger person is trying to talk his mother into using his aluminum trekking poles instead of the old wooden stick she is carrying, and mom is just not interested. Jennifer realizes, as she listens, that people don't like receiving advice and/or recommendations. She laughs because she loves to give advice. She writes, "Mom didn’t need a better walking stick. Most of us don’t need the solutions we press on each other. But we sure do need people to walk in the woods with us, side by side."

I also laughed as I read her insights, because I'm also a person who loves to share good ideas, products, things that work, advice. And I realize that, seriously, no one wants to know the songs on my "Energy" playlist from iTunes or what kind of yogurt I prefer or what self-help book I just finished. And grammar: no one wants to hear it. I'm glad I've had this insight...this little aha moment...because it relieves a lot of pressure. My new motto: "Keep quiet and carry on." 


... pumpkin fun ...

It's pumpkin time and one of the things we wanted to do most when Suzie and Lizzie came to visit was to get photos of Lizzie at a pumpkin patch.

We went to the American West Heritage Center and had lots of fun on their big slide and blackout straw maze, but the best fun for a little two year old was at a roadside pumpkin stand on south main. They had lots of free activities perfect for toddlers. Simple memories and photos are sometimes the best, and this afternoon was filled with them.
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- chronicle books -

One of my favorite book websites to browse is Chronicle Books. It's fun to wander through this amazing digital bookstore's virtual aisles and look, look, look.

Their covers are exceptional (as in the book shown below of Shakespeare's love sonnets). They have extras on the website such as discussion guides for kids. Click here for an example of an excellent readers' guide to discuss a darling book called Little Red Writing. The discussion guide is conveniently aligned to Common Core so teachers and parents save time and someone amazing has done all the work for them. Seriously, this is so good.

Chronicle has gorgeous journals and notebooks...that's what first drew me to the website. I have to tell myself, "No more journals." And no more notebooks or Moleskine blank books. OK, maybe a few e-books because Chronicle has them too. They take no shelf space, do not gather dust, and are perfect for a quilt or craft book collection.

If you look at the tabs across the Chronicle homepage, you'll see a tab that is labeled personalized. It was there that I discovered the CUTEST books for kids that can be personalized with names and photos. The reviews on the website are very positive with five stars and lots of enthusiasm. I'd love to create some of these book for my seven grandchildren for Christmas 2013. 


^ Grammy Camp ^

Summer recap. Memories of Grammy Camp.

All six were here and we had a fun three days. We made cars for what was supposed to be a drive-in movie...though we never got around to the movie part.  

Brookie was a good sport and made her own car with leg holes.

Bailee got artistic with hers. 

Emmett's the perfect age for box cars. Wait, his was a fire engine. 

It's just so fun to drive!

These two year olds are just learning to play together. Suzie fixed their look-alike hair. 

Painting birdhouses in the garage.

Cute Sierra came for a manicure/movie night with the big girls. Giggles galore.

Brooke's project was making curly bows for the little girls' hair. (She's cutting the dowels that she wrapped the ribbon around for the curly effect.)

Tiring the kids out at the park is the best way to have a peaceful night.

Carter was a monkey, scrambling up the climbing wall.

The little girls went up and down the slide a hundred times.

Grandpa and Emmett got out the ever-popular stomp rocket. 

The perfect toy for little boys...and grandpas get a kick out it too!

Suzie taught a dance from her Las Vegas YW girls. Brookie picked it up and taught it to Sierra. They danced for an hour or more. 

Meanwhile Grandpa read the comics to the little ones.

Best part of the day for Grammy. Whew. 
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