Sunday, October 28, 2012

Snow and Blood and Gore

snow outside in October.... must be in Idaho- ha! 

So early last week it snowed a skiff and I was so excited I took this picture above! For sure not the first time I've had snow pictures in October, but still. Well, then just a day later we woke up to...

... seriously enough snow to make my original excitement laughable! Overnight we got something like five inches- it's only just now melting! The boys were over the moon- they could hardly wait to get out and play in it. We had snowball fights all morning :) When Taron and Keaton were here this weekend, they dug out the snowpants and sleds. They all rolled some massive snowballs that will likely be in our front yard for a fair while! Any bets that we'll have more snow for Halloween than for Christmas around here? :)

I've also been seriously consumed with the boys' costumes and can hardly wait for them to trick or treat in them! I'll take lots of pictures to share :)

And why do I mention blood?

Stephen and I got all decked out to be zombies for a Halloween party we went to! We kinda thought our makeup turned out pretty great- and it was really fun to do! We watched THIS video (from the makeup artists for The Walking Dead) and went on a search around town for liquid latex... to no avail

Sooo.... I read THIS article to figure out a replacement we could do at home. It was so easy and, I thought, really effective! Taron and Keaton loved it- Stephen had fun trying to scare them! The little boys, though, I think were happy to see us wipe it all off when we got home :)

Gross, eh?!
The replacement for liquid latex was simple- white tissue paper and school glue!
Thought I'd share a quick list of how we did it, just for the fun of it:

1) We spritzed torn strips of tissue paper with a spray bottle, then pressed it where we want to create a gash on our face. I left it kinda wrinkly on my skin instead of smoothing it.
2) Then we just used our fingertips to apply a thick layer of white glue around the edges of the paper and on top. I kinda left it thick and bumpy, like that part of my face had been cut into.
3) Stephen mixed his glue with oatmeal to give it a rotting type of look :)
4) We dried it with the cool setting on my blow dryer,
5) then sponged on white cream makeup over our entire face, mixing grey some too.
6) Next we hollowed out our eyes and lips with black.
7) Then we blotted the gash portions with grey, black and green costume makeup- just the cheap stuff from Walmart that I've had since we did these costumes for Taron and Keaton in 2008!
8) Then we sprayed Zombie spray blood on the gashes- it was thick like gel.
9) We also put tons of conditioner in our hair to make it look gross! It doesn't even show, but I grossed my hair up way more than I was comfortable with! I pressed, seriously, probably 6 or 7 handfuls of conditioner into my hair, then ratted it while I was bent over- it was a mess! But still, it hardly even looked too much worse for the wear! Oh well... ended up putting it in a yucky knot once we got there anyway :P
10) We ripped and blood sprayed our clothes a little too- nothing major. We also rubbed some mud on our clothes, but not much at all since we didn't want to ruin furniture!
11) Oh- just remembered- Stephen's teeth are some zombie teeth he found- they came just like that! He had to take them out while we were at a party so he could talk normally :)

Fun night! And leave it to to me to take something fun and simple and turn it sentimental, but I do want to add that I love my husband! I am so grateful he is the kind of man that will do things like this with me, that he will put effort into things even when it maybe isn't the safe or easy thing to do. I appreciate that he truly enjoyed doing our costumes and wasn't unwilling to take the risk of showing up having dressed up. It's more comfortable to not do anything, ya know? But, together we are comfortable going out on a limb somewhat- he makes everything fun and much more comfortable for me! I love you, my zombie babe ;)


Sunday, October 21, 2012

Handsome Fall Boys

They really are, huh? :) Once in a blue moon I'm able to have everyone ready in enough time before Church to grab a quick picture of them- I love the little boys' sweaters! Even less often do they all have nice smiles together obviously, but I'll take it! 

And this is what happens when you leave your sprinkler system on while it freezes overnight... Coop and Ry thought it was awesome and loved the icicles! Cooper even said he was happy to wear pants now that there was "snow on the ground." Normally it's a daily battle to get him not to wear shorts anymore :/ Needless to say, we turned the water off after!

Yes, yes, jumping is still a number one sport around here...
and I still can't resist taking pictures of it all!

A few notable events in our everyday lately... the "batting head against wall" stage of potty training came and went and overnight Ryder just got it! My last box of diapers has long since been bought- woo hoo! He seems to love being like his big brothers :) And... 

Cooper is reading! It is so cool to see your own kids "get it!" Sometimes it really frustrates him because he'd rather be doing something else. But when he slows down enough, he does so good and is so proud of himself to gain new words everyday!

And for fun...we recently made these fun "Monster Eyeballs" using THIS printable-
the boys loved teasing Dad with them when he got home!

Snagged this cute shot of Coop recently too- love :)


Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Super Simple Halloween Countdown

Two weeks (not quite even!) until Halloween!!
Cooper suggested just the other day that we make a countdown, "like Christmas."
And so we did! I had seen this idea and thought it would be super simple and fast,
plus had a fun thought to make it our own with some washi tape I'd won from Pick Your Plum!

We used normal toothpicks to stick right into a little pie pumpkin-
I think these little mini guys are just so stinkin' cute!
I tore a small piece of the washi tape, then wrapped and clipped it to create a little flag on the end,
then handed them one by one to the boys to poke into the top of the pumpkin themselves-
they loved it! I did have to stab little marks for Ryder  :)

I love gingham and was thrilled to see the sheer diagonal striped tape I had created it on it's own!
 Black and white tapes were what I had and it was perfect for Halloween :)
Really any colored tape, or paper scraps, or tissue paper,
or whatever you have on hand, could be fun.

They took one pick out tonight before they went to bed and now have it to
look forward to for the next two weeks :)
A little something to fulfill their excitement from now to then!
If you have an excited kiddo, (really, if you have young kids, they surely are excited!)
this would make a great super simple project- enjoy!


Monday, October 15, 2012

Halloween Happiness

The boys have been excited for Halloween since, well... last Halloween!
They are getting so excited for their costumes and all the fun of the holiday.
They've been doing a bit of decorating and playing- this is our front door!
He turned out cute, eh? :) I got the idea HERE.

They actually dress up a lot...
The next Sunday at Church, a bunch of the kids in our Primary class
said they saw them out jumping in capes :)

They got in by Mom for a quick dress-up shot, while I was wearing a silly hat too :)

They love this big skeleton- he's a holdover from the last two years!
And we tried making these hand and foot print bats-
they just wanted to finger paint more than make these, but got them done for my sake anyway. :)
I saw this idea HERE

Now I need to be getting hot on finishing starting their costumes... :)


Friday, October 12, 2012

Apple Pie on a stick

Doesn't this little beauty look, well, beautiful?!
It's an Apple Pie Caramel Apple- my very favorite!
Apples dipped in caramel alone are yummy, but these are delectable...

Wanna find out for yourself?
Start with either Granny Smith or Golden Delicious apples, small to medium.
Slip your sticks into the tops and let them lie in wait...

I make caramel from scratch, using my Mom's treasured recipe-
this is the real key to making these so yummy I think :)
If you have a caramel recipe of your own, go with that.
Or unwrap bulk caramels or caramel baking bits and go with that...
Or... alright, alright: 

You can click and copy, then paste into Word for a quick recipe card!

Moving on...
give your caramel a titch to cool, then grab those waiting apples and dip away!

Let them cool completely before adding the Apple Pie goodness :)

Mix about 1/2 cup brown sugar and 1 tsp of cinnamon (I really only ever just eyeball these)
and set aside in a small bowl. 
Most other apple pie apples I've ever had use a mixture of just white sugar and cinnamon
for the outer coating, but the brown makes them much better, I think!

Melt one bag of white chocolate chips or half a brick of Almond Bark.
 (a two-four cup size measuring cup works great for melting in)
Dip your cool caramel apples into the white, kinda twisting as you dip.
Immediately after pulling the apples out,
start shaking your cinnamon/ brown sugar mixture over the top.
Make sure NOT to roll the apple in the mixture, instead grab fingerfuls by hand
and shake in on, twisting to cover the whole thing really well.

Set on a greased cookie sheet or cutting board to cool... then devour!
Doesn't that taste divine?? :)


Just thought I'd share my little FAIL in the process of making my own...

This is what happens when you overcook your caramel
but don't realize it until far too late in the game...
toffee anyone? :P

And this is what my adorable baby does while Mom works in the kitchen...

Seriosuly makes me laugh! I know I shared this little escapade of his earlier,
but wanted to include these pics too :)

Enjoy those apples!


Wednesday, October 10, 2012

Salt in the Wound

I fear this post might be like salt in the wound for Stephen,
but want to document these thoughts none the less...

I make no secret of the fact that I'm no animal person. Or that I have a degree of continual angst for my husband's falconry addiction. But I've also long since figured out that if I can't beat em', join em'. Not on every flight for sure, but on occasion at least. The boys love these birds and my husband simply can't be happy without them.

They make awfully cute little models in the soft evening light during a family flight, eh?

It wasn't that long ago that Stephen had quite a few birds- seriously, like 14 of them or something.
But when we moved and when he took on aquariums as a bigger part of his world again,
all of that changed. For the past two flying seasons, there's been
just one.
One bird that he had to recover from beyond the horizon the first three or four flights.
The bird that I told him needed to belong to someone else at that point.
The one bird he stuck with anyway.
The one bird that, in our minds at least, won the Utah Sky Trials last year.
The bird that caught Stephen one of his beloved sage grouse on just his third flight out this year.
The one bird that he has loved and enjoyed more than any other, ever.

And the one bird that crazily, unknowingly, slipped his transmitter in a broad piece of desert near Arco last weekend. After a stunning flight, Stephen started to track him and realized his transmitter- the small device he attaches to the bird to be able to get a signal telling him where it is- was on the ground without the bird. By the time he found the bird without the help of the transmitter, it had eaten enough to no longer be interested in Stephen, whom it basically only sees as an easy food source.

After scouring the lonely desert for two days, real life had to kick in again.
We don't live in the broad desert near Arco.
We can't take a week off of work or school on a strand of hope that,
I might add, has a way of getting thinner and thinner
as you peel your eyes for a speck on the hill or in the sky.

So, we packed back up and drove home, feeling like we had left a piece of our family behind.
Even I felt like that. Even I was... sad. For real sad.
I think Stephen has dealt with it by not thinking about it too much... 
In usual form, his network of falconry cronies have rallied around him
with kind words and, believe it or not, offers of new birds.
So he won't be without for long, at least not physically.

Emotionally is another story. He'll be glassing the Arco air forever, I daresay. Maybe even the anywhere air... I doubt he'll ever let go of that last thread of hope that the bird that was the one will somehow show up again... 



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