Monday, October 31, 2011

I Must Be Getting Old

Tonight we went trick-or-treating. No tricks were performed. Of course the kids were dressed up, but some of the people handing out candy dressed up as well. We saw a wolf, a zombie in a trash can, a clown, baby doll, devil, things like that. One house we went to had a man in a white sailor hat and red shirt with blue pants. I said "Oh, it's Gilligan!" The man and his wife smiled and said I was right. As we were leaving my 9 year old niece said "who's Gilligan?"

Friday, October 28, 2011

Happy Halloween!

Tonight we went to a Halloween party at church. Derek and I each had three bowls of chili. Emmy and Andrew were a little too excited for the trick-or-treating later to eat. Derek's mom made the kids their costumes. Emmy decided to be Alice from Wonderland again. You may remember that she was Alice a few years ago.

Andrew was Handy Smurf. I decided not to paint his face blue. I thought he looked really good.

I made the hat this afternoon. It turned out better than I thought it would, considering that I didn't use any kind of pattern. I just went off a picture I found on Blue Buddies, a smurf website I found. After the chili we went from classroom to classroom getting candy. I was glad that we got to do it inside. It's been getting so chilly outside lately. I'm planning on Trick-or-Treating with my sister-in-law and her kids on Monday. It should be a lot of fun. It's nice to see the kids having fun, and we all love the candy.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Haunted House

Yesterday, the kids and I went to a haunted house at the mall. It was pretty cool. They tamed it down for kids, which is the only reason we went. Emmy didn't want to go in, but I made her. I probably shouldn't have since she was so scared she wanted me to hold her the whole time. At first that was okay, but after a while my arm really started to hurt. Most of the workers were dressed in Alice in Wonderland themed costumes, but there was also a pirate and a gorilla man. Before we went into the haunted house Andrew got to pet the Pirate's birds. Grampa told me they were a macaw and a cockatoo. Grampa was there taking pictures for people, so we got one of Andrew with the pirate and his macaw. The kids kept calling the guy Jack Sparrow.

Then we were waiting in line to get into the haunted area. The Queen of Hearts came and talked to Emmy. Nana was out there helping Grampa and told the girl that Emmy is gonna be Alice for Halloween. Emmy thought the queen was pretty cool. After we went all through the scary house we came out and there was the Queen again, so we got a picture with her, too.

I had a lot of fun, but that house would be really super scary on a regular night.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

They call him Jack O'Lantern

Derek and I got a couple big pumpkins the other day. Today I finally carved them. The kids were so excited to have them! As soon as it was dark tonight Andrew insisted that I light some candles in them. Here the first one I did.

The second one was easier because I kinda knew what I was doing.

Here they are together. You can get a feel of how big they are here.

They take up most of my table.

I found this fun story at I enjoyed it and I thought others might, too.

The Legend of "Stingy Jack"

People have been making jack-o'-lanterns at Halloween for centuries. The practice originated from an Irish myth about a man nicknamed "Stingy Jack." According to the story, Stingy Jack invited the Devil to have a drink with him. True to his name, Stingy Jack didn't want to pay for his drink, so he convinced the Devil to turn himself into a coin that Jack could use to buy their drinks. Once the Devil did so, Jack decided to keep the money and put it into his pocket next to a silver cross, which prevented the Devil from changing back into his original form. Jack eventually freed the Devil, under the condition that he would not bother Jack for one year and that, should Jack die, he would not claim his soul. The next year, Jack again tricked the Devil into climbing into a tree to pick a piece of fruit. While he was up in the tree, Jack carved a sign of the cross into the tree's bark so that the Devil could not come down until the Devil promised Jack not to bother him for ten more years.

Soon after, Jack died. As the legend goes, God would not allow such an unsavory figure into heaven. The Devil, upset by the trick Jack had played on him and keeping his word not to claim his soul, would not allow Jack into hell. He sent Jack off into the dark night with only a burning coal to light his way. Jack put the coal into a carved-out turnip and has been roaming the Earth with ever since. The Irish began to refer to this ghostly figure as "Jack of the Lantern," and then, simply "Jack O'Lantern."

In Ireland and Scotland, people began to make their own versions of Jack's lanterns by carving scary faces into turnips or potatoes and placing them into windows or near doors to frighten away Stingy Jack and other wandering evil spirits. In England, large beets are used. Immigrants from these countries brought the jack o'lantern tradition with them when they came to the United States. They soon found that pumpkins, a fruit native to America, make perfect jack-o'-lanterns.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Another Field Trip?

Yes, another field trip. This time I went to the pumpkin patch with Emmy's class. We started off in the classroom for breakfast.

Then we loaded up on the bus.

When we got to the pumpkin patch the first thing we did was go on a hayride.

We rode all around the pumpkin fields.

Next we played by the barn.

When we went into the barn the kids got to do a small craft

and listen to a story called "Too Many Pumpkins." We sat in a barn stall while the lady read to us.

The we got to go back and play some more in the yard in front of the barn. They had bean bag toss games, sling shot games, a teepee, a shed full of dried corn kernels with buckets and shovels, and a hay maze. I really enjoyed the maze.

Then we got to see a lot of the animals on the farm. Some of the goats liked to do tricks.

The teacher's husband got everyone a little goat-feed so the kids could feed the goats. Emmy wasn't scared at all.

They also had cows, pigs, emus, a llama, a yak, a kak (cow-yak mix), and horses. I saw a couple rabbits running around, too.
The last animals we saw were the chickens.

The lady tour guide went into the chicken coup. She showed us the different colored eggs. There were white, brown, and a sort of off white. She accidentally dropped an egg and the chickens all scrambled to eat up the innards. I was surprised the chickens would eat that.

Then the lady brought a chicken out and let the kids pet her.

Then we all got to go into the pumpkin fields and pick out our own pumpkins.

Then back on the bus. I got a pumpkin, too.

Emmy wanted her friend to sit with us on the way back. She talks about this boy at home a lot.