Well I’ll say, a family post is LONG overdue around here. And so tonight at 10:30 pm here I start on a family blog post that may or may not get finished until next October.
I don’t want to forget all the memories we’ve been creating here in Hawaii, so I figured a short recap of what we’ve been up to these past few weeks of Fall would be a good start. I’m jumping the gun a little seeing as how there are pictures from this summer that I still haven’t posted, but we’ll save those for another over achieving kind of a day.
Probably the cutest thing this autumn was taking both my girlies to the pumpkin patch. Pumpkin patch you say??? Hawaii has a pumpkin patch?! Why yes they do. And their pumpkins are the cutest. They are bright orange, round little miniature pumpkins that are perfect for kids to carve.
Who am I kidding?! I HATE carving pumpkins. Talk about a barf fest. They stink, they are ooey gooey, they mold in like a day, and you always end up doing all the work while your kids either a) boss you around or b) sit in the corner concentrating on not gagging from all the grossness.
I loved that I got to take both girls separately to the pumpkin patch. Originally we were all going to go together through this community preschool program I participate in, and Braelyn so happened to be out of school so she was going to tag along. But the field trip got canceled due to rain and mud. Braelyn was devastated and couldn’t stop repeating the, “It’s not fair!” slogan until the next day when she came home from school with a field trip of her own scheduled to the pumpkin patch.
And, of course, she begged and begged me to chaperon because, let’s face it, I’m like the coolest mom ever. Hello!
It was hilarious watching Braelyn rule over her group of three other girls. She bossed them around like she was the Queen B of all first graders. And these kids actually listen to her!!! What are we in for with this kid???
I finally had to pull her aside in the sunflower maze and talk to her about letting others make some decisions. While she was scowling at me for interrupting her reign, I continued to explain to her that her friends would enjoy her so much more if she let them make some choices, too. I’m pretty sure my advice went in one ear and out the other because the second we got out of the maze she held up her pointer finger high in the air and exclaimed, “First graders of ‘Group Braelyn’ line up behind me!”
Second best thing about hanging out with first graders was watching what they eat for lunch. I’m telling you, I don’t know if it’s the fact they’re first graders or the fact that we live in Hawaii, but I saw some pretty crazy lunch combos. This one girl pulled out a bag of Chips Ahoy cookies, a pack of Nutter Butters, a tube of Pringles, a bottle of Sunny D (NOT even juice!), a SPAM sandwich, and two mini packs of Oreos.
Braelyn’s eyes got real wide at the sight of all this “glorious” food that she exclaimed with pure envy, “You are the luckiest! Just the LUCKIEST!” Apparently her assortment of fruits and veggies, lean dairy and protein, and whole grain crackers paled in comparison to the loot that most of her friends received. Haha!
Emry’s canceled field trip got rescheduled to a later day, so I was able to take a repeat visit with her around the farm. Pretty much Emry could care less about anything that she saw as long as her favorite friend Cora Jane was by her side. This kid is in a stage of obsessing over having friends. I think it’s because she finally realizes that she has some.
These two hopped, skipped, jumped, and danced their way through the pumpkin patch looking at all the baby animals and scoping out some of the local produce that the farmers were growing. It was a gorgeous day and we sure had a blast!
Trumping the two trips to the Waimanalo Country Farm were the 4 or 5 Halloween celebrations that we had. Seriously! I swear for the three weekends leading up to Halloween we had some sort of activity planned. Halloween seems like a month long holiday now.
First we found out about a costume party at the Disney Store at the Ala Moana shopping center (a city in itself) and decided to take the kids. They marched around the store in their costumes, took pictures with cardboard Goofy, and got their first bag of official Halloween goodies.
Afterwards we caught part of a live dance performance on stage, attempted to ride a city bus just for the kicks of it (Ben ultimately shot that idea down), and ran into some of Braelyn’s school friends where they put on a show themselves on stage until we got kicked off by some mall cop. It was a great night indeed!
The following weekend we participated in our church’s annual “Trunk or Treat” where I brought some super yummy chili and the girls ran around playing carnival games. At the end of the night all the kiddos gathered outside in the parking lot so they could go around to all the cars and get candy. It was hilarious because almost every family was passing out the same Costco variety bag of treats. But the kids loved it and that’s all that matters!
I have to say there were two things that really impressed me about the church party. First, there was actually enough food. More than enough! Usually with church potlucks, there is never enough food. Us Mormon families bring all our kids and go to town eating. But apparently, not only to Hawaiians know how to eat, they sure know how to cook…a lot!
Second of all, I have been to church Halloween parties for years with face painting. Usually the teenage girls run this booth and you are lucky to get a lopsided pumpkin or smeared rainbow on your face. Emry sat down and this lady painted the most gorgeous, magical rainbow/fairy face. It was so beautiful I felt like I should have paid her! Fun times, fun times.
The following weekend we had another chorus of Halloween events ranging from a Halloween parade with Emry’s joy school, a carnival at the girls’ gymnastics, “Treat Street” trick-or-treating with Emry’s free community preschool program, carving pumpkins at Braelyn’s school, and of course the real deal TRICK OR TREATING!
I seriously can’t count how many times we dressed the girls up. Our costumes included: Elsa, Cinderella, witch, cat, hula dancer, pink princess, and I think that’s it. Again, exactly why I DON’T plan Halloween costumes. They constantly change their minds.
Poor Emry wanted to be Elsa again on the actual day of Halloween, but she was wearing the cheap polyester outfit so much that she was breaking out in hives. We broke her heart telling her she had to dress up like a witch. Getting candy made it all better.
Speaking of candy. I am soooooo ready to be done with it. For the first week of Halloween the girls would dump out their buckets at least five times a day to compare and trade their loot.
Emry would ask me about 30 times before 9:00 am if she could have a piece of candy and I would reply the same way each time, “After lunch”. And so then she would ask to eat lunch by 9:00 in the morning thinking it would get her candy. She walked around with that bucket of candy for a good solid week.
I’m happy to say the candy is about GONE! Hallelujah!!!
Hopefully your Fall festivities were as magical as ours because boy did we have fun! Busy? Yes. But, FUN? Heck YES!!!
Until next time, October.