Friday, October 30, 2009

Halloween Costumes Unveiled!

Now that we've been seen in public, it is officially okay to reveal our top-secret, home-made, family Halloween costumes! You already saw The Frog's finished vest and the behind the scene makings of his hat, and Jay's costume didn't take more than probably an hour to complete (because I cheated and bought overalls. Like I'm going to attempt those when they're pretty cheap at Walmart) but mine was quite an ordeal. A fun ordeal, but an ordeal nevertheless. Here is the before picture of my "dress", i.e. a 100% polyester "nighty robe" , straight from the DI- $5.
And after I shortened the sleeves by about 5 inches, took in a LOT of fabric around the waist (in about 7 darts/seams), I removed the ties, unpicked them and added them to the new front of the skirt (in my finished product, I wear the robe backwards), sew on some hooks, a hem, collar, a waist thingy (do those have a name?), and a turquoise (plastic) "gem" (can you tell what I am yet?) you get...
Voila! The finished product (Jay and I together)! Can you tell what we are?
The gloves and crown are from Zurchers, though I had to add the "jewel" embellishments to the crown (Dollar Tree). Here's the back of my dress, for those of you who are interested...
We really really really wanted a good family shot, but The Frog would NOT cooperate... Here is the best one we got (at least we're all looking at the camera.) As you can see, we had to hold The Frog's hands down so he wouldn't try to remove his hat. As you can see, he is not pleased.
Andy (Lindsay's Andy) managed to get this cute shot of him. The Frog is too busy with the amazing broom to bother with removing his Toadstool hat.
Why did we put so much effort into these costumes you ask? Why, for my elder brother John's annual Halloween party! And ooooh man, did they put a lot of time and effort into it. Their house looked like a completely different place! They made it look like their walls were old wood with peeling wrapping paper, they put up a creepy "cast-iron" fence in their front yard, complete with jack 'o lanterns and graveyard, there were strategically placed little mice "running around" (black mouse silhouettes complete with mouse hole) appropriate spider-webs, funky colored fire in the fireplace, furniture covered in white sheets... the place looked like an abandoned mansion (though, I felt a lot more welcome than I probably would have at an abandoned mansion). Anyway, they put a LOT of work into it and it looked AMAZING. I wish I had taken more time to take pictures of the details, but there's something about the combination between lots of food, and watching The Frog where that never seems to happen. I did manage a couple though:
Here's my sister-in-law and baby S. Can you tell what they are? I think it's too bad that my brother didn't go as a king to put him together again ;)
And here are the cousins sitting together. I took dozens of shots of them in this position and this is the best one... still not awesome. Baby S was trying to grab The Frog's hat the whole time, and The Frog didn't know what to make of the whole situation. In the end, he decided to rip off his hat (as usual).
All in all, it was so fun making the costumes and seeing friends and family at an amazingly well-planned out Halloween party. I can't wait for next year. Any costume ideas?

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Yummy Mess

In the time it took me to make this

The Frog did this

Thank goodness most of the cupboards in our kitchen are elastic-banded shut!

Sadly, we never got to taste this lovely treat- in the rush, I left the pie on the roof of the car and we drove off. It smashed in the road and broke my favorite glass pie pan.

Turns out, I'm one of THOSE people...

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Now Introducing...

My family is constantly emailing each other for "such and such" recipe from our last family gathering or emailing everyone to let them know about the great "that and the other" they made for dinner last night. We decided it behooved us to start a family blog, strictly for posting our family favorites and it is officially up and running, though still needs some visual tweaking, but the food posted will taste just as good. :) We decided to dedicate it to my grandma who makes
and so have named it after the famous accompaniment:

bon appetit!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

What are you doing?

Saturday night we got to spend some time at our newly-wed friends for dinner (great food, great fun!) but we made The Frog stay up a couple of hours past his bedtime. During our drive home, I looked back, expecting to find The silent Frog to be asleep and this is what I found.What a party animal!

Saturday, October 24, 2009

First Fall Leaves!

"We" (ie Jay) raked leaves together today and The Frog seemed to really enjoy himself. If the leaves weren't so wet, I would have encouraged a bit more pile play, but what he doesn't know about, he doesn't miss out on, no?

I apologize for so many photos. I'm still having fun with iPhoto effects :)

Friday, October 23, 2009

Howdya like THEM apples?

If Newton sat under our apple tree, he would get a big headache because our apples are dropping in droves now! Every day after work, Jay brings in a basket full, and we start calling our neighbors to see if anyone wants some.

I did a bit of a photo shoot, trying to get a good pic for Christmas card, and decided to play around with the effects in iPhoto. I'm very impressed with all you can do! I think my plain old shots actually look, pretty decent! Check 'em out.

Tuesday, October 20, 2009

In the word's of Tay, "UN-believable!"

The most amazing thing happened to me today! I'm not going to say it was the best day of my life, but it could quite possibly be among the top 5... definitely top 10.

Today I won a $500 gift certificate to Macy's! That's right: 5-0-0! Can you believe it! I never win anything from drawings. I used to always enter those drawings at the mall where you can win a new car, or wave-runner, or whatever is on display at the time. I, of course, always entered my mom, because I was too young. As far as I know, she never won anything, despite my valiant efforts.

So, I went into Macy's a few weeks ago to replace a plate The Frog managed to break, and I almost left feeling disappointed that they didn't have them in stock. However, I wanted to make a cheesecake for that weekend so I ended up buying a spring-form pan while I was there. There was some kind of promotion going on where if you donated $5 you get a $10 gift card (useable immediately) and the chance to enter a drawing. I thought, why not?

I will point out that I painstakingly thought about how I should fold my card before sliding it into the slot, and I give full credit to my immaculate craftsmanship.

Sadly, I have no recollection of what I, in the end, decided to do to it. But clearly, it worked. Now that I know that I am capable of freebees, I feel a renewed hope in probability- the one area of math I could never really grasp.

So does this mean my chances of winning again are slimmer now?

At any rate, I won. I'm a winner. Look at me!

Money stacks.jpg

So now only one question remains-

what should I get?

Friday, October 16, 2009

I'm friends with a famous violinist!

One of my buddies from high school (well, really I just knew who she was in high school, but we didn't become good friends until we both went back east for college) came in town because she's on tour with Start Wars in Concert! We got to have lunch today (Linds came too) and though I brought my camera, this is the only shot I managed to take :) Good thing it's a cute one!

Thursday, October 15, 2009

Quilts 2 and 3

I started working on a flannel lap quilt almost 2 years ago while visiting Jay's family. I made a lot of progress fairly quickly (considering I was in grad school at the time) but once we moved to my parents, concentrated on house shopping, bought a house, got moved in, and had a child, I hadn't been able to make time to finish it. Well, I FINALLY did!

And here's the crib quilt I made for The Frog while Jay's family was in town. (Notice a reoccurring theme? That's because Jay's mom is a machine-quilting expert.) I was trying to mimic the wall hanging in the nursery. They look really great together, if I do say so myself.

Monday, October 12, 2009

Jay's fam in town

This past weekend, Jay's family flew from MA to visit us! It was so good to see them and The Frog had a great time with his Nanny and Gampie and Cousin K. We were so busy the whole time, I forgot to whip out the camera except during the highlight of the trip- going to the dinosaur museum at Thanksgiving point. Tturns out, it's the largest in the world! Though I didn't get to read much information because I was following The Frog and keeping him out of trouble, it was still awesome to see all the constructed dinosaur skeletons and Jay would usually relay some of the more noteworthy facts. The Frog had a good time too- we would love to go again!

Some of the dinosaurs were dressed up for Halloween!
The Frog feeling a fossil
Jay with a not-so-woolly mammoth
The Frog, Auntie K and a Shark
The Frog uncovering fossils

While Jay and his dad were busy fixing things around the house, Pam and I worked on a quilt for The Frog and I'll post pictures as soon as I finish it.

We're so glad they could come! It's always great to see them!

Friday, October 9, 2009

The Frog 13 months!

I didn't take many pictures this past week, probably because I was trying to get the house ready for Jay's family to visit, but The Frog did manage to do at least one irresitable Kodak moment.
Some Frog behaviors I've been meaning to write down:

-Lately he loves to get some sort of rag (usually he prefers it wet) so that he can wipe things off. I guess he sees that I wipe things a lot? It's pretty funny. One time he shook out some of his milk so that he could wipe it up with a rag. Silly boy...
-He's getting 3 molars! It's strange that there doesn't seem to be any logical order like there was with his first 8 teeth... he's getting two on the bottom left and one on the top right.
-He's becoming devious.
I have a fake plant in the family room that has been a constant battle to keep The Frog from pulling the leaves off it. One day, I noticed that he would only do it when I was busy doing something (and thus, ignoring The Frog) so that I would stop what I was doing and come pay (negative) attention to him. So I decided to try an experiment: next time he picked the leaves off I would just completely ignore him. The opportunity arose when I was trying to read while sitting on the floor near where The Frog was playing. He wanted me to stop
he picked off a leaf.
I could see in my periphery that he was watching me, but I in no way changed my behavior.
He picked off another.
Still I ignored him.
So he walks up to me and pushes the leaves in my face while I'm reading.
Still I make no signs of interest.
He picked off several more and stuck them in his shopping card and pushed them around, but he doesn't pick them off much anymore.
Libby 1, Frog 0.

However, just goes to show you that some kids will take negative attention to being ignored all together. Very interesting.

Wednesday, October 7, 2009


I finally got things hanging up in the library. You like?

Saturday, October 3, 2009

First Empty Wheat Bucket!

I finally finished my very first 45 lb bucket of wheat!! I decided to open the hard white wheat first, and now I'm delving into some turkey red. So far, I like my home made bread better with the white wheat and pancakes seem to fall apart more with the turkey red. Hmmm. Anyone know of some things I should be doing differently?

The Frog's Halloween Costume in Progress

I finished making part of The Frog's Halloween costume this week. Can you guess what he's going to be? Here's another hint.

First Cheesecake!

I made my first cheesecake ever! I'm always surprised at how not hard to make a lot of "fancy" foods are. Cheesecake is no exception. I did get a gigantic crack in the top, but it tasted great and once you slice it up, you have no way of knowing about it. I used this recipe for the cake and this one for the strawberry topping for Jay and put dove hot fudge on mine. mmm.

Thursday, October 1, 2009

Pumpkin Porch!

Because I got such a late start on my garden, there were only so many things that I could still plant, so I ended up planting 3 different kinds of pumpkin and also 2 butternut squash plants (Because I LOVES butternut squash). I've started gathering them to greet all our visitors. Sadly, we got our first frost last night, and so I doubt if we will get anymore. I think I may pick all the partials and display those too :)