Posts Tagged ‘family’

Norwich Winterfest Parade 2018

Thursday, December 6th, 2018

Here are just a bunch of photos from our super fun day at the Norwich Winterfest Parade. Caroline got to be a judge, the weather was great, and we brought home so much candy we still have some almost a week later.

Sometimes our town looks like the place they film Netflix Christmas movies (I’m obsessed with Netflix Christmas movies), and this was one of those days.

Christmas Tree 2018

Wednesday, November 28th, 2018

Previously at Geers Tree Farm: 2017 / 2016 / 2015 / 2014 / 2013 and for a REAL throwback, 2009

This Christmas season is happier all the way around because E is here to enjoy things with us. We still enjoyed them while he was deployed, but knowing he was missing out dulled the shine of everything just a little. Plus it’s nice to have two adults around when you put up outside Christmas lights so one can call 911 when the other falls off the ladder. (No one actually fell off any ladders.) It’s also super nice to have another adult to wear the baby on his back for tree hunting so I can take pictures that have the baby in them.

We went to Geers Tree Farm for our tree, just like we do every year, and it was perfect. It wasn’t actually as cold as it looks in these pictures. I mean, it wasn’t like the year we didn’t even wear coats, but there was no wind and the sun was shining and I ended up taking off my scarf because hiking around is hard work and I got warm. We took the wagon ride up to the same hill where we’ve¬†gotten our tree the last four years and then walked most of the way back, enjoying the view. The farm was the least crowded we’ve ever seen it (going at 9:30 am on a Friday was a good call!) and we were home with the tree up and decorated before noon.

We actually ended up with a slightly smaller tree than we usually do, but that’s ok because our living room isn’t that big and we’re going to have to fit presents for 5 kids and 7 adults in there on the 25th. I’ll tell Caroline that’s why Santa didn’t bring her a pony – there just wasn’t room.

Not A Beach Vacation But Better Than No Vacation 2018

Sunday, September 30th, 2018

Our beach vacation got canceled this year because of a hurricane. I was VERY angry about it, that vacation means a lot to us as a family and as a friend group (we go with two friends from high school and my college freshman roommate). We didn’t want to completely cancel our time off though, and since E hadn’t been to the lake house yet this year we hung out in Virginia. It was a little colder for my taste, but it was still fun. Our best Navy friends came to hang out from Virginia Beach so Caroline got to see her favorite person. We even did a grown-ups only day in NoVa with most of the friends I was supposed to see at the beach, so we don’t have to wait another year to see my BFFs. It’s hard to complain about a lake vacation, especially now that we’re home and I’m just looking back on the pictures.

Linc and Finn’s Superhero Birthday Party!

Monday, August 20th, 2018

Lincoln turned 4 on July 23rd and Finnegan is turning 2 on August 30th. Since they’re only 5 weeks apart, they get joint birthday parties. I asked Lincoln what kind of party he wanted, and since he’s totally Batman-obsessed, his answer was A SUPERHERO BIRTHDAY PARTY! Finnegan has no objections because a) he’s still 1 and b) he also loves superheroes. I had a hard time narrowing it down to which superheroes – generic Super Hero stuff? The DC Universe? Just Marvel Comics? Am I a monster for mixing it all together? I decided I didn’t actually care and we went with every kind of Superhero from all the worlds. Fight me if you think that’s a crime.

After years of throwing Evan cold spring parties and Caroline cold winter parties, it is SO FUN to throw a party where 90% of the activities are outside. This was also the first party where I planned actual activities for almost the entire time – we had 2 straight hours of games before we did cake, then the grown-ups all got to sit down while the kids burned off some of their energy. It was the most fun I’ve had at one of my own parties ever, even though the noise level was insane.

Previous parties for Lincoln and Finnegan: 2017 Children’s Books, 2016 Camping Party, 2015 Twinkle Twinkle Little Star

There is a ton of superhero stuff available everywhere from party¬†stores to Target, so I grabbed stuff whenever I saw it. The pinata was from Walmart, the napkins are Party City, the backdrop and banner are from Amazon. All the crepe paper and regular balloons and silly string came from the dollar store and the quick-fill water balloons have been purchased for the last year every time I saw a pack on clearance (although they are available online as well). Let me know if you’re looking for anything and I can be more specific.

The party wasn’t just a party – it was Superhero Training School. The kids had to complete their superhero tasks in order to get a certificate (my husband had all the parents fill in the name once the kids were here).

The training stations included:

Hulk Smash Bricks
Laser Maze
Bomb Disposal
Web Slinging
Bad Guy Capture
Leaping Tall Buildings Practice
AND
The Infinity War

We used jumbo cardboard blocks to make smashable tours for Hulk Smash practice.

Almost all the kids at the party fell between age 12 and age 2, and they all loved all the activities. Once they picked out their mask they were ready for training.

These masks I got from Amazon were GREAT – 2 of each hero so there wasn’t any fighting over who got to be the only Superman or whatever, plenty of “girl” heroes, and they held up through a lot of wear without falling apart.

After we finished the training, we celebrated with the pinata. I hate the pull-strings, so we did it the old-fashioned way. We lined the kids up by size and they each got two hits. It survived all the way to the last kid!

Of course, all these superheroes needed plenty of energy to save the day. I’ve always loved doing themed food at parties, but I’ve learned over the years what is popular and what just ends up as leftovers. I definitely over-estimated on the cake, but I’m not even that sad because I love leftover cake.

superhero birthday food

superhero birthday food

superhero birthday food

superhero birthday food

You can buy a 40-count box of individual Fritos from Amazon for around $15, which works out perfectly for portable, fun taco salad. At the camping party we called them walking tacos, today they were “ready for action” tacos, since you can eat them while running to stop bad guys.

Two bottles of red wine, a bottle of lime selzer, some fresh fruit. It was DELICIOUS.

We also had favors (bubbles, tattoos and a toy) as well as a tattoo station.

Finnegan did not understand how to blow out his candle, but he definitely liked the cake and the part where everyone sang. Linc just loves everything about birthdays.

At the end of the day, we even managed to get some family photos of us all in our on-theme outfits. It was just a perfect day with amazing weather and SO many great friends. A huge thanks to my parents who did an enormous amount of work for party prep and clean-up and all our Ohio relatives who made the super long drive to help celebrate the babies! Having cousins here for their birthday was such a treat.

(Finnegan isn’t dripping blood, it’s ring pop. He’s obsessed.)

Happy Birthday to Lincoln and Finnegan! We love you!!

 

 

Lake of the Woods 2018

Monday, July 30th, 2018

This year, my parents moved full-time to their lake house. That means my mom officially retired and my dad sort of kinda almost retired except that he still works almost every day and has to commute up to Washington D.C. a couple times a week. I sort of doubt he will ever truly retire, just because he literally does not know how to relax. He needs stuff to do. The lake house was a good purchase because it always needs something done – fix a leak, build a garage, mow the lawn, do boat stuff, go to Home Depot three times in one weekend. It’s also an incentive to get us to visit – lake houses are much more fun than the nice but boring house they lived in when I was in high school. The kids beg to visit and cry when we have to leave.

Our visit this year was extra exciting for Caroline, since the week included pony camp for her each morning at the community’s equestrian center. The boys didn’t seem to care that she got to go to camp and they *only* got to swim in the lake, kayak, tube, boat and hang out with my folks. Unfortunately, E couldn’t get out of work that week so we went without him.

Here are way too many photos from our trip. You’re welcome, Mom!

This is Fancy saying “HI”, not being mad. Caroline and Fancy are BFFs.

My children are incapable of making normal faces for photos.

Finnegan was nervous about jumping the first day. It didn’t last long.



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