Monday, October 31


Each year we are blessed to host a fun Halloween party with our friends...for all of our friends!!  This year it was at the Mira's house.  Here are some highlights!
 The hostesses decided that we should all dress up as the very popular 80's Solid Gold Dancers!!  I used to love that show!!  But like my friend Carey said, if you watch the youtube videos of their routines, dance has come A LONG WAY!
(pictured from left to right: Michele, me, Lori, and Carey....our friend LeAnn hosted too but she is really pregnant and understandably didn't want to put on a solid gold dancer costume)
 Felix was a whoopy cushion.....that made me laugh SO HARD!!!
 some pics from the party
 more pics of our friends....we served A LOT of food...we always have a soup theme.  This year we made Potato Soup, Chili, Taco Soup, White Chicken Chili, and more!!!  It was the perfect weather for this hearty spread!
 Some of the kids
 Therese and Mark....Mark held his cape that way because he said that his costume was made cheaply....he had the funniest plastic hair....and Therese IS super woman...ask anyone!!
 Angela and Rob as a 70's couple...Is that Rob's REAL chest hair?!?
 Chuck and Liz (Lizzy)...They are TOO FUNNY!! (Chuck is our dentist...he really is so gentle and kind.....just a little scary around Halloween)
 Adam dressed as the Allstate insurance "Mayhem guy"....a 2011 favorite at the party!
Madison and Isabella set up a "Spooky Boutique" at the party where they would paint faces, put on glow in the dark nail polish and crazy colored hair spray....that was fun to wash out of Nick's scalp!! but the girls had a blast!! (Madison was an Eskimo girl)
 Noodles and Savannah dressed as a werewolf and a glow in the dark skeleton
 Chuck and Liz are AWESOME!! They brought out a hay filled flatbed trailer from their ranch and gave a trick-or-treating hayride to all of the was so fun!!
Me and my hero (Batman) and LOVE, Jerms.  These are just a few of our pics from that memorable evening.  We just love getting to do this every year...what beautiful memories we are making!  We have such great friends in our lives....I just think about them and cannot believe how blessed we are...what a fun night!!


One of our favorite Halloween customs is of course....carving pumpkins!  We learned in our homeschool history class the history of the Jack-O-Lantern (an Irish legend) and then went outside on a crisp  fall morning to carve our own
 Savannah cleaning out her pumpkin really felt mushy and smelled pretty yucky
 Daddy helping the kids...Even though he was sweet enough to help them clean and carve, he really loves all of this stuff too!!
 Notice that we ended up using surgeon gloves so that our hands could stay clean....when I was little, we just dove right medical gloves!!
 2 of my children HAVE pumpkin smiles right now!!
 Noodles and his finished pumpkin
 Savannah and her finished pumpkin
 Madison made a baby pumpkin face with only 2 bottom teeth showing
Me and my Noodles  What a great family activity

Tuesday, October 18


Since we are homeschooling we have been able to travel as a family more.  We were blessed to take a trip to Niagara Falls...the biggest blessing of all was that we were able to have Grandma and Grandpa (my mom and dad) with us on our vacation.  What special time we were able to spend with them.

 This is the famous "Rainbow Bridge" that connects Canada and the United States...we captured exactly why it is called Rainbow Bridge (It is also called the Peace Bridge)  We walked across the bridge so that we could explore both the Canada and US side of the falls....we stayed on the Canada side.
With this picture and all of the wonder of the world in mind, go ahead and challenge me to prove to YOU that there is a God...but only if I can challenge you in return for you to prove to ME that there isn't!!!!
Here are our kids with Grandma and Grandpa...We brought rain suits with us on the trip...we were constantly getting wet

 Here are the kids looking over the falls from Rainbow Bridge...heading to New York
 Grandma and Grandpa on the was pretty cold when we went... the leaves were changing and the scenery was breathtaking.  The air was crisp and cool...much different from the 100 degree temps that we left back in Texas
Our family in front of the falls... they were amazing!  God is amazing!! The sound of the water and the beautiful falls made us realize how little we are in comparison to His great masterpiece!

This is a pic from New York looking at the Canada side.  That big green colored hotel is the Sheraton where we stayed.. it was so beautiful.  We had a falls view room.  We could open our window and hear the water.  Even with the window closed you could still hear the rushing water.
We saw a black was very strange and beautiful
 The kids on the rock symbolizing when the Europeans landed at the Falls (Father Louis Hennipen...a Franciscan priest) in 1678, and making it known to the world...of course there were natives already living in the area.
 Pictures do not do the falls any justice...they are so grand in person!
 We spent one rainy day in an indoor water park that was attached to our was so fun!!
 We had to try french fries and gravy while we were in Canada...that's a given!!
 Remember Slush Puppies?  They taste EXACTLY the same as they did when I was a kid!
 My kids fell in love with them as well.  They get slushies a lot, but back then this was the only slush out there.  It might have been the original!
 Savannah coming down the water slide!
 Nicholas coming down the water slide!  We barely had time to take this pic of him as he was off in a flash to the next one
 There is Savannah WAY UP high on the water slide
 Madison eating children must be part fish.  They did not even want to stop to eat!!
 Savannah eating a QUICK lunch
 Nicholas didn't even take off his goggles to eat...look how they are all fogged up!! They could not wait to get back into the water
Here is my sweet Madison swimming in the wave pool
 Here is the view of the falls from our room!! At night, they light them up.  They are amazing.  On Friday (the day after Jeremy's birthday) they had fireworks over the falls!  We could watch from our cozy warm room....what a great memory!
Here is a night view of some of the Canadian skyline.  It looked a lot like Vegas
 We went to the big tower restaurant (that big needle looking building from the picture above) on the falls and made napkins hats! Very sophisticated!
 Here is Nicholas' napkin hat
 Madison "Fake" going over the falls!
 Nicholas "Fake" going over the falls!
  Savannah "Fake" going over the falls!
 We saw this old ice cream push dad used to push one of these around for a summer job in college at the beach on lake Michigan..the kids thought that he was SO LUCKY!!
 Madison at the Guinness Book of World records museum...the tallest man exhibit
 The kids in a fun house in the "sideways room"  it was a weird feeling
My Love (Jerms) standing in the "sideways room".  It is amazing how our brain sends us messages about perception and balance.  We don't realize just how much our brain plays a role until we are tricked purposefully
 Look at this cute couple!  My mom and dad and great!!  Here they are in this oversized chair in front of the Guinness Book of World Record Museum.  We were so happy to get to share this fun experience with them!
 A beautiful day at the falls. The kids found a great little park to run around in right next to the hotel.
We still did school work each day so that we would not get behind (we still had some to make up, but what a wonderful "school" experience we had on our trip with everything that we learned.  Even though we had to do some school in Canada, the kids were sweet about it seeing how blessed they were to be on a trip.
 Every morning we all went to Perkins Restaurant for a HUGE breakfast before starting our day
They made these cookies for the kids that were 1/2 sugar and 1/2 chocolate chip.  What a great idea!!
We visited a bird sanctuary, an aquarium, and tons of other cool places.. but the VERY BEST part of the entire trip was the time with my parents.  We just LAUGHED so much!! We had so much fun making so many memories!!  what a blessing they are to us.  I love you Mom and Dad.