Halloween 2019 – Harry Potter

October 21st, 2019

Last year, Evan really wanted to do Harry Potter costumes for Halloween, but he was outvoted by everyone else who wanted to do The Greatest Showman. I have no regrets about that because those costumes were amazing. I let him do a mini photoshoot in our neighborhood, but didn’t throw myself into it the way I did with our real costumes.

This year, everyone was all in on Harry Potter, although after we made a list of character options, no one actually wanted to be Harry Potter himself. Evan and Caroline wanted to be Weasleys (Ron and Ginny), Lincoln chose Malfoy because he wanted to be mean to his siblings in character, and Finnegan was convinced to be Dobby. I decided I wasn’t dying my hair red again this year, so Mrs. Weasley was off the table, but Professor McGonagall would be perfect. We even convinced E that he should participate in our pictures although he wouldn’t be here for trick or treating. He refused the following costumes: Snape, Prof Quirrell, Hagrid, Dumbledore, Mr. Weasley and anything that required makeup. He settled on being a Death Eater, although now I might be questioning whether or not he’s a good person. Just a little bit.

Because I am nothing if not extra, I decided that not only would we each be an HP character, we were also going to make as many props as possible so we could turn our minivan into Hogwarts for the town Trunk or Treat.

I’ll have details on Hogwarts later, but the rundown on our costumes is at the bottom of the page. I won’t make you read all that before you get to the pictures.

Finnegan (Dobby) – I made the ears and tea towel outfit from fabric store supplies. It took two tries to get the hat right, but it wasn’t that bad.

Lincoln (Draco Malfoy) – Robe is this year’s Target robe, white shirt is H&M, sweater was already in his closet, black dress pants are Walmart, shoes are from last year’s costume.

Caroline (Ginny Weasley) – robe is borrowed from a friend but the label says it’s Rubies Costumes *I don’t think it’s the same as the one currently on Amazon, based on the reviews*, shirt was from Goodwill, sweater from Old Navy, skirt is French Toast from Amazon, socks are from Amazon, shoes were already in her closet.

Evan (Ron Weasley) – Robe is last year’s from Target, white shirt is from last year’s costume, sweater was already in his closet, black pants are from Walmart, shoes were already in his closet.

All the ties came from Amazon, but they were adult-sized so I shortened and hemmed them.

E (Death Eater) – Robe is from Amazon, plain white mask was purchased on Amazon but I decorated it with hot glue and paint, everything else he already owned. Tattoo is fake and also from Amazon.

Suzanne (Prof McGonagall) – I made the robe with cheap fabric from the fabric store and lined the sleeves with Deathly Hallows fabric. Hat is from Amazon, decorated with fabric store feathers and a button I had in my button box. The brooch, shirt, skirt, and boots are all from Goodwill.

I made all the wands with chopsticks from Amazon, hot glue, and paint. I got the idea from this tutorial and it was VERY fun to make them.

Props: Scabbers the rat is from Amazon, the spider is part of our Halloween decorations, and we made baby madrakes out of tin foil, homemade clay and craft store supplies. Tom Riddle’s diary is from Amazon and the cauldron is from CVS.

We took the pics at Trinity College in Hartford, CT. Notable alumni include a bunch of governors, CEO of the Boston Red Sock, and the founders of Tom’s of Maine, Momofuku and Shake Shack. Non-notable alumni include lacross stick in a bowtie Tucker Carlson. It’s about 40 minutes from our house, but it was totally worth the drive because it was gorgeous and a pretty good stand-in for Hogwarts.

(exact links coming soon)

There you go, our family Harry Potter Halloween Costumes for 2019! Three years in a row makes this a pretty definitive tradition now, so if anyone has suggestions for next year I’m open to them. I don’t think I have very many years left where Evan will agree to be anything besides a Fortnite character or a scary mask, so I’m going to keep being as extra as possible while I can.

First Day of School 2019

September 30th, 2019

Only a month late! Much better than the last day of school post from June.

This year, Evan is in 5th grade, Caroline is in 4th grade and Lincoln is in Kindergarten (although he keeps insisting to me that he’s in first grade and I literally double checked to make sure I wasn’t the one who was confused).

That means they ALL go to the same school. This is the only year that will happen and boy do we all love it. They love riding the bus together and seeing each other during the day, I love only having one bus time in the morning and afternoon and having a full day at home with just Finnegan.

Evan has a male teacher for the first time ever and he is having a great year so far. He’s playing the trumpet again and swears he’s going to actually practice this year.

Caroline has the same teacher for 4th grade that Evan did last year. She tells me she still goes to visit her 3rd grade teacher every day and sometimes helps her with the class. I would be super doubtful that that was true…except it’s Caroline. She’ll probably have a paying job in the office by the end of the year somehow. She is going to play the flute in band as well as singing in the chorus.

Lincoln has a Kindergarten teacher who might have just stepped out of a movie about the perfect Kindergarten teacher. His two years of pre-K totally prepared him for “real” school, so he’s rocking everything so far.

Finnegan isn’t in school yet, although I’m tempted to put him in some sort of nursery school 2 or 3 days a week now that he’s potty trained.

New backpacks are all from Pottery Barn Teen, and I would highly recommend them.

Finnegan: 3 Years Old

September 3rd, 2019

My baaaaaaaaaby isn’t a baby anymore. He’s not even a toddler. He’s *almost* a preschooler.

Now if only I could get him to potty train. (It’s fine. He won’t go to elementary school in diapers, we’ll figure it out. I just hate the part where I can’t ever sit down because I have to walk him to the bathroom 400 times a day.)

Finnegan is a real sweetheart most of the time. He loves people after he pretends to be shy for a few minutes. He’s super brave and a bit of a daredevil, so he hurts himself regularly but it never slows him down. He has a great vocabulary but still a baby voice, so sometimes he’s hard to understand. He’s very smart and has a looooong memory. He can be a real jerk when you’re mad at him, because he’ll just laugh in your face and DGAF about your consequences.

Don’t ask when he’s getting a haircut because he’s not.

Apologies for the wind blowing background noise on the video, we did it at the lake and I didn’t block the microphone well enough.

Last Day of School 2019

August 25th, 2019

I decided not to backdate this to June, but that’s when the last day was. I’ll have a post literally next week with the 2019 first day of school pictures.

And here’s 2018 Last Day of School post

And here’s the 2018 First Day of School post

Oh Hi

August 21st, 2019

Do you know what I never did? The end-of-the-school-year posts from June.

I took the pictures. I made the graphics. There’s no good reason I didn’t just get it up here on the blog.

I also have pictures from our vacation to Virginia, Linc & Finnegan’s very Pinnable birthday party, updates about our house and our dogs and the kids. I didn’t make Lincoln a birthday video post or recap my trip to Disney World with Caroline for The Summit cheer competition. Oops.

This blog turned 11 in July. It was 11 years ago that I first found out I was pregnant with Evan and decided blogging would be a good way to connect with other moms. It worked VERY well. Some of my best friends began as internet friends but now I would consider them more real than most people. I find it much easier to address a vague and unspecific audience when I talk about things I struggle with than talking to people face-to-face. I don’t want to give up this space, even if I don’t have any readers or sponsored posts or cool invites any more thanks to my absence.

In fact, this blog is the baby book for all four of my kids, with their birth stories and monthday updates and birthdays and adventures. It’s important to me that I keep it up, at least casually, while I still have little kids. The two oldest absolutely love looking back on things I’ve written about them (which is a relief) and I don’t want Linc and Finn to wonder where their toddler and preschool years went.

So if you’re interested in content like “Last Minute Disney Trip Tips” or “What To Do When Your Baby Keeps Shouting ‘You not my best fwend anymore!'” or puppy dog birthday party ideas, you’re in luck. I’m back.