Thursday, November 22, 2007

Halloween Hooligans

For Halloween, Sophia decided to be the tweener-rock-Disney-princess Hannah Montana, who she adores. Go figure.

*is puzzled*

Benjamin, on the other hand, went in the other direction and decided to be a ninja.

These costume choices turned out to be happily painless, in both the logistics and the price tag, which made for a happy Mama.

For the Hannah Montana costume, we just picked random clothing already in Sophia's closet -you know, stuff with sparklies on it, and a denim jacket because apparently there is a picture of the ever-advertised icon in which she is wearing just that- bought a wig for $4, gave her some metallic blue eyeshadow, and stuffed a black sock onto a wooden spoon, applied electrical tape, and lo there was a microphone.

(That was Clint's addition, Mr. Crafty would like it known.)

Benjamin got a black fleece outfit from Old Navy, which has gotten a ton of wear on its own, and we picked up the black ski mask and mittens for about $3. His numchucks (I'm not sure if that's the correct spelling for numchucks, but I don't quite care enough to look it up) were made of paper towel rolls stuffed with grocery bags and then shoved into black dress socks, then more electrical tape was added. The transformation was then complete, and he became...Ninjamin!

Really, I didn't realize I had married MacGyver until the Halloween accessories had begun in earnest.

We ended up going to the party thrown by the USO here on post, for a few reasons. We weren't feeling the door-to-door this year because Benjamin was just a little ill and we didn't know the neighborhoods. We also knew a few people going to the USO thing, so we went and it was really well done. There were adults sitting around for the kids to go trick-or-treat, and they gave us cookies and popcorn and sodas. There were two movies playing, coloring tables set up, and it was all free and safe and warm and, well...contained.

It's like my parenting tip to a tired mom...take your kid to Barnes & Noble and let them play with the trains and look around, because the entire section is enclosed by a wall, with only one gap you have to monitor. Entrapment. That's the key to a successful day of parenting sometimes.

This last picture is here simply because it cracks me up so much. Hannah Montana has no idea, but she about to be attacked by that lurking Ninja with all his fancy kung-fu moves!

If that happened on the Disney show, I might watch it.

Sunday, November 18, 2007

The Great Pumpkin Outing

Yes, I know I have neglected this blog terribly. I don't have a good excuse. But look! Look at the picture! Pay no mind to the witless, lazy woman who finally posted it!

Last month (hangs head) we went in search of the perfect pumpkins at Meyer's Tree and Berry Farm, where they had a pumpkin patch, corn maze, ubiquitous big bouncy thing for kids, animals to pet, and pumpkin butter.

Ok, maybe the pumpkin butter was for me.

As a side note, when we parked and were getting out of the car, I asked Clint what had happened to the $20 bill he'd had the day before. He had $9 left, and when further queried on what he'd done with the other $11, he admitted he had spent it in the snack machine at work. Half impressed, half horrified, I exclaimed, "How do you spend $11 in a snack machine?!" And Benjamin, my four-year-old sweetheart, said, "Yeah, Dad, that's bullshit."

Oh eat your heart out, Martha Stewart! I win the parenting award!

In any case, my sailor-mouthed children enjoyed petting goats, climbing a huge bale of hay, sitting in a feed trough filled with grain, and operating these old water pumps.

Of course, it wasn't all fun and games, because we did come to hunt down and capture the elusive Perfect Pumpkin (tm).

So a short hay ride later, we approached the hunting grounds, which were refered to as "the pumpkin patch" by everyone else. Naive fools.

Here you can see Benjamin running away after he has skillfully snatched what might be his Perfect Pumpkin from the small boy who had his eye on it.

I think all that time spent besotted with Dora and learning the art of being sneaky from Swiper the Fox has paid off.

Sophia was also satisfyingly successful, as you can see by her big, cheesy grin.

Oh, the joy of beating all the smaller, slower kids to grab the best gourds from the thinning "pumpkin patch"!!!

So, flushed with the success of our pumpkin hunt, we felt sufficiently awesome enough to attempt the Corn Maze.

It was tough. The kids had to wrestle several times for dominance in leading the mission, or in other words, who got to walk in front with the tall orange flag, and once or twice I thought I saw them sizing me up for a food possibility if we should find ourselves stranded in the winding labyrinth for days on end, but we made it.



So when we returned home, the only thing left to do was carve the prize(s). The kids settled on "scary Halloween faces, please" while I went a little crazy and tried my hand at a cat. Clint scooped, if you were wondering.

Mission complete.