Sunday, October 31, 2010

Happy Halloween!

One might find it strange, but in our house...the day of the dead is a big 'ole celebration.  We love it.  We like to spend the whole entire month getting ready for it...decorating and making signs and eating candy and spooking each other. 

This year was a little tame...I blame it on the fact that John's gone...I guess we just couldn't get into the full Halloween spirit complete with flashing strobe lights and fog machine.  In fact...I didn't hand out even a single piece of candy....but that was mostly because I was out trick or treating with my girls!

But - Oh what a night!  It really was one of those evenings that had it not been halloween all plans would have been cancelled and we would have shut the house down and all gone to bed early.  First, my camera has disappeared....I had it and it literally has just magically disappeared.  Second, I was late to very scary storytime and didn't get to do my part.  I was late because I was searching for the camera.  Third, we didn't eat dinner until after 7:30PM.  Ugh...everyone was starving and very grouchy.

So, all the great photos I've taken over the last few days in October you'll just have to wait until I find that darned camera...  In the next door neighbor loaned me her camera so I did get a few cute photos of my ladybug and Angel...

Happy Halloweeeeeeeeeen!

Saturday, October 30, 2010

Shades of Red...

This week at our elementary school it was our drug free week. Each day the students wore something new and crazy. Friday was wear red day and the class with the most red got a prize of some sort.

So...Friday morning, Madmad walks into my room with quite the outfit on. She'd put together the following - a red gingham top, a pink flowered skirt, hot pink leggings and red tights for the complete outfit. WOW! Oh, and she put her own hair up in two half pigtails on the side of her head.

Some choices just aren't worth making an issue out of and her choice in outfits is one of those for me. I let her wear pretty much whatever she wants within reason...I guess what I'm saying is bad matching is not a reason for me to veto an outfit...

"Don't I look beautiful? I'm wearing shades of red today, mom."

Yes you do and yes you are madmad!

It was her class party today. I made cake balls. Essentially you bake a cake then mush it up with frosting and roll it into balls. Yummmmmmm. Plus, I dipped them into chocolate. They were good. I made probably 60 of them...and they were all gone by the end of the day.

So, Bella and I went to her class party with our cake balls and had a great time watching the kids read ghost stories, dance, make skeletons and eat their hearts out. I actually got Maddie's ghost story on video, but its unfortunate that you can't really hear her very well. I might have to make her redo it here at home after she brings her story back.

(oh...and you get a good view of her awesome outfit here too.)

Yesterday night we had her soccer team party. It was a small gathering. Some of the parents couldn't make it that night - but those that could had a great time bowling.

Our poor little Vilseck Falcons team lost every game this season - The good news is that they played hard and they had fun.  In the end it didn't really matter.  Coach told me that Maddie is the best 8 year old goalie he's ever coached.  I thought that was a great compliment for her. 

And another great shot of the outfit... ha ha ha

Maddie, Bella and Aiden.  Shhhhhhhh....the big secret is that Maddie has a bit of a crush on Aiden.  He adores Bella and is letting her throw the bowling ball for one of his turns.

Uhmmm...yeah...she whomped every other kid out there.  A 125?  She would have whomped me.  I do have to say, though...that Mico with the 27 was the only kid that didn't want the bumpers.

Coach handing out the trophies.  These are pretty cool...the tops the wheel of fortune...makes a little buzz sound. 

The teammates that made it to the party...

Maddie and Coach.  Bella calls him "papa"...we're not sure why, but whenever the soccer balls come out she starts asking about papa. 


Thursday, October 28, 2010

Fall cleanup

Every year right about this time, Rose Barracks has a fall cleanup requirement for all on post housing and non housing area.  Normally, I'd hand John a rake and send him off into the ankle deep foliage that has made its residence in our backyard and have him do our "fall cleanup."  Which, if you haven't guessed by now - essentially means you have to rake up all the leaves in your yard and tidy it all up for the winter.

So...seeing as how instead of leaves - John has been enduring bad weather and sand storms - Bella and I ventured out into the backyard today and took it by a vengeance.  Now note the sharp corners?  I only have to rake what is essentially MY yard.  The rest is considered common area...and so thats what I did to be in compliance with Fall Cleanup orders.

Did you know that if you aren't in compliance they can choose to kick you out of post housing?  Well, I procrastinated until the last minute...but I did smile to see how many of my neighbors were right out there with me raking up theleaves from their yard...on the last day of fall cleanup.  ha ha ha. 

I wish I'd taken a before photo...but I didn't.  Instead once I realized that I'd wished I'd taken a before photo I decided to show you the far back part of our common area...this is what my lawn used to look like...

Bella was a great helper...  I'd rake up the big pile and she'd pick up a few leaves to put in the bag...

Then she'd dump them all out and run off with the bag...

Or she'd forget the bag completely and just wallow in my piles of leaves...

 I think she may actually be growling at me in the above photo...

Regardles...we got it all done.  AND I went the extra mile today and cleared all the patio furniture and will be tarping it tomorrow to protect it just in time for winter.

I had to laugh, however, when I surveyed the final product.  Think Sesame Street and sing along with me now....  One of these neighbors is not like the others.  One of these neighbors just isn't the same...One of these neighbors is not like the others...  Come on now...can you play our game?  Can you play our game... rake your OWN yard.  Actually - they are getting ready to move and if she doesn't do it in the next few days I'll get out there and rake them for her.  Plus all those leaves in the far back common area I will take on as well.  I'm looking at it as my good deed for a year.  That deserves at least a little something from Santa Claus this year wouldn't you say?  hee hee hee...

Sunday, October 24, 2010

The Pumpkin Patch!

Yesterday we went to the pumpkin patch!  It was sooooo fun.  I don't know how the Germans do it, but they really know how to rock a pumpkin patch!

Ha ha ha... if there was a sarcasm font that whole first little bit would have been written in one.  Its a little known fact that pumpkin patches (like the traditional pick your own pumpkin patch in the good ole USA) do not exist in Germany. 

In fact, we've been trying to get to the giant pumpkin FESTIVAL, but have been thwarted at every turn by something...rain, snow, barfy kids...  The pumpkin festival being a really big deal here...its giant.  They use pumpkins to create great works of art and the theme this year was an "under the sea" theme so they were supposed to have pumpkin mermaids, pumpkin whales and dolphins, pumpkin boats, etc.  AND, in fact...they do have a pumpkin boat race every year...where people sit in giant pumpkins and paddle their way across a lake.

So, the end of my rope and only 8 days before Halloween, I conceded that perhaps we will just have to suck it up and go to a makeshift pumpkin patch....

And wahlaa! 

The girls loved it.  They smiled pretty...they were still super excited to pick out a pumpkin (even though our selection was minimal) and all in all, we had a marvy time.

And who knows...maybe we'll STILL make it to the pumpkin festival.  It lasts through the first weeks of November...

Friday, October 22, 2010

Five Little Pumpkins..

5 little pumpkins sitting on a fence.

The first one says, "Oh my its getting late."

The second one says, "There are witches in the air."

The third one says, "But we don't care."

The fourth one says, "Lets run and run and run."

The fifth one says, "Let's go and have some fun!"

Whooooooo went the wind and OUT went the lights and the five little pumpkins rolled out of sight.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Queen of crafting.

Actually, I'm really not even close to the queen of crafting.  In fact, I may not even include myself in the royal line...  I *might* allow myself the humble title of royal crafting family stable girl...  Only because in all the best romantic stories the stable girl ends up being the real princess.  ha ha ha...  And if she's not the princess she usually gets the hot guy...  And if thats not the case at the very least she's the buxom beauty sexy goddess. 

That works for me.  :D

Anywho...This past month has been full of crafting for me and the kiddos.  Most of it has been centered around big surprise IS the season for spooky ghosts and goblins.  I thought you might like to see just a few of our fine creations...

Every Wednesday night I have a group of girlfriends that come over and we sit around and knit and cross stitch and we gab a lot.  (you may have heard it commonly referred to as a "stitch-n-bitch") - but the reality is its a great time to just hang out with the girls and...well....gab.  One friend arrived with nothing to do - so I set her to work helping me with my Storytime project - Coffee filter ghosts.  Take a coffee filter - wet it down and then dab two eyes and a mouth and watch it run.

Another storytime craft that I did with the little ones was a paper plate ghost.  These were so cute!  Here is Bella - pleased as anything - holding her creation up for the world to see...

We also have set to work decorating out playroom with awesome halloween spooky decor.  Like this great sign the girls colored...

And then we also made our spider shirts.  I found this online and just thought it was so adorable we HAD to have them.  So I bought a couple of grey t-shirts and  you put black paint on the child's hand -- palm and fingers, but not on the thumb -- and then overlap the palm prints to make the spider. 

Next, add some white circles for eyes and a little white line for the web and tadumm!

And then the final unveiling of the two cutest little bugs on the block...

And finally - we made a few "yellow ribbon" crafts.  The yellow ribbons came in a wonderfully thoughtful care package that my friend put together for us.  In fact she sent us lots of fun little craft thingamabobs...and the yellow ribbons just happened to be one of them...

Maddie wanted to make an Army girl.  Its quite possible that she will end up a soldier.  She's got the brains and the athleticism and the willpower to make herself a force in any position.  But she'd probably take after her daddy and want to go into the intelligence field.  But she is also a bit of a rebel...note the non traditional colors she used and she specifically pointed out the pony tails to me and said, "ha ha...soldier girls can't wear pony tails, but MINE can."

Bella, on the other hand did a fine job making our flag a rainbow, putting blue circles in each star and then glueing on her soldier boy.  I'm under the impression that this one is supposed to be her daddy.  Not because of the fine resemblence, but because she talked incessantly about him while we were doing our project. 

And now I put away my glue sticks and my crayons and my scissors and bid you guten nacht!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

What would you do with this?

Two days ago I was given a little bench.  Its currently sitting outside on my front walkway just below the window for the playroom.  Its just a plain little wooden bench with cast iron of the legs is broken, but that doesn't matter much right now...the bench works just fine.

So...its a tad bit boring don't you think?

So, I want to make it cute...and I'm thinking owls.  In particular, I'm thinking of using this as my inspiration...

What do you think?

What would YOU do with this bench?

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

We fell into Fall....

We fell into Fall...and before I even realized it now we're headed straight into winter.  Did you know that the forecast for Vilseck on Thursday is SNOW???

Is that crazy?

I find it a tad insane myself.

But, before it gets too far into that snowy white blanket of snow that eventually ends up a pile of brown slush (6 months down the road) ... *GROAN*...

Too many leaf photos?  It just brought back so many memories that I had when i was a kid.  In fact, I seem to remember that in my late teens I was out there with my sisters playing in the leaves.  I was such a nerdy kid.  But, its the good kind of nerdy - you know the kind that loves New Kids on the Block and reads late into the night and loved playing Dr. Mario on Nintendo.  ***sigh*** Those were the days.

And, before I get too much further down memory lane...  I have a friend here who goes on late night walks with her dog, Tyson.  Tyson is a much loved animal in our family.  In fact, if you happen to mention his name to one nearly 2-year old munchkin you will have the shriek of TysonTysonTyson ringing through your eardrums for the next few hours.

Regardles...Tyson sniffed out a hedgehog...and my fearless friend picked it up and then just on a whim rolled it down a hill.  Because you know when hedgehogs get "found" they roll into a ball.  Now before you cry Animal Cruelty! - please know that the hill wasn't particularly large and I know for a fact that no harm was done to the hedgehog.  In fact, there is now a hedgehog that frequents the front door of my friend's house and we're fairly certain its because he LIKES being rolled down a hill.  Otherwise, I can't help but imagine that the poor little creature would learn to stay far away from the light...right?

Well, my friend brought over the hedgehog so I could meet him.  Hermie is his name.  And  yes, apparently my friend is also skilled in the fine art of knowing if a hedgehog has lace on his panties. 

Say hello to Hermie...

 Hermie was so darn cute.  I had never dared actually pick up a hedgehog before.  In fact, I think I can pretty safely say there has only been one other time I've seen an actual hedgehog - that was at the Nurnberg zoo and no - it was not in a cage - it was while walking around the forested park areas.  I certainly didn't touch that hedgehog...I knew they carried rabies.

Well, my friend did an extensive search and has learned that German hedgehog do not have rabies.  (Does this sound vaguely like that one story way back when the German guy from housing told me that German spiders don't bite?)  Hmmmmm.....

So - being the "mom of the year" that I am...I promptly took Hermie up the stairs to visit Maddie.  YES it was a school night.  YES she was in bed.  YES it was 11:30PM, but really - who wouldn't want to be awakened from a deep sleep to meet Hermie.

And see...she's quite happy about it.

And so ends my "Fell into fall" just never know what a change in the weather will bring...

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Angels and ladybugs...

Yesterday was the "Cougar Foundation" Halloween Extravaganza!  Sounds awful fancy dancy doesn't it... in reality it was a bunch of games set up behind our Outdoor Recreation building...and some food that you could buy as well.  It was a costume party so we all got to get dressed up in our costumes and (since its only about 5 blocks from our house) walk on over there...

This year after much deliberation and me talking her out of zombie, death, and mayhem costumes...Maddie decided to be an Angel.  Sooooooo ironic considering the whole empty room/lost priveledges thing...but thats another post...

I did her makeup in pinks and with a little eyeliner finished it off.  She wanted more, but I told her that would have to wait until Halloween night...this was good enough for the Extravaganza!

Bella, on the other hand, was a ladybug.  Now here's the deal with this costume...Halloween is pretty cool for parents because you get to help your kids decide on what kind of fun costume they want...well, this year, the ladybug costume came as a gift from...dum dum dum dummmmmmm....  Cruella Deville. 

Weird, right?  I know...I was a little miffed at first.  I understood the sentiment...apparently Lexi was a ladybug at age 2...and Maddie was a ladybug at age 2...and wouldn't it be cute for Bella to be a ladybug at age 2?

Well, yes...  it would be cute.  But thats not the point...the point is that I want to help find a cute costume for her.  Not have one sent to me from a woman who a year ago swore she'd hate me forever.  BUT...Maddie was sosososososososososo excited and I ended up agreeing to use it before I really had a chance to think it all through and say no.


Well, she IS a cute ladybug...and I made those little antennae for her. 

And then mama here...I was a pink lady.  Now please don't jump in horror...this self portrait is pretty bad...but its the only shot I got of me.  My teeth are giant.  whats up with that?  But, in true Pink Lady style I did sing my very own rendition of "There are worse things I could do.....than go with a boy...or twooo...."  I love Rizzo.

So off to the extravaganza we went where I spent a total of $4 on two tickets and two bounce house wristbands.  Both a total waste of money, but at least it was only $4.

The bounce houses were big enough for about 3 kids...Maddie went in the big kid one...and immediately got back out and said, LAME.  okay...there goes a $1 down the drain.  Bella went into the little kid one...jumped for about 15 seconds then wanted out.  So, I paid $2 for about 30 seconds of excitement. 

We were determined the games would be Maddie chose the dart game.  Bella chose the bowling game.  Darts was fun!  Maddie loved it...and we all cheered loudly for her.  Bella's bowling game...?  The pins were about 7 feet from the place where the little kids were supposed to bowl.  So, I ask the kid managing the game..."Can I move her forward?  She can't throw that far."  And the kid says NO.

So instead Bella threw the ball and I "helped" it along to the pins.  I got the death star from the 15 year old bowling pin Nazi.  Good grief, kid...the most she can "win" is a tootsie roll.  I think my $1 is worth that at least.  I actually even saw this same kid tell a 4 year old that she couldn't have one because she didn't knock any pins down!  Luckily, her mom has an attitude like mine and she marched over and took one for her kid anyhow.  ha ha ha.  He didn't last very long as the bowling game volunteer.

If you can believe it...neither of these adorable girls won the costume contest either!  The 0-5 age group had a raggedy Ann and Andy couple...  Ok...they were adorable.  But the 6-11 age group chose a scary kid with a scream mask on.  Seriously?  I told Maddie to show him the way to Heaven.  She didn't get the joke, though. (ha ha...I totally reread that paragraph and found it a tad crazed mom...i.e. Tanya Harding style - my kid must win)

And so there it was...our first Halloween Extravaganza was done! 

...And we all went home and had pizza for dinner. 

The End.

Saturday, October 02, 2010

Smells like baby powder.

This is what i get for....

1.  Not paying attention to where Bella is at for 5 minutes.

2.  For leaving the powder open.

3.  For leaving the powder on my bed.

4.  For teaching Bella to climb up onto my bed by herself.

One entire bottle of powder floating around in my room.  Our entire house now smells like baby powder.  I guess it could have been worse.  ha ha ha