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Friday, November 28, 2008

Black Friday

Busy day around here! This is what we were up to:

1 - We did not hit up the sales. The outlet mall only a couple miles down the road opened at midnight. Oh, the consumer insanity!

2 - We got up our usual time and spent our morning watching "Christmas Vacation" and decorating the house for Christmas! The kids "helped" decorate the tree. Will was done after about a minute but Marcus loved to grab decorations and tell us where we should hang them. We still have two wreaths to hang in the windows and some lights to put up outside. We are going really easy with the outside decorations this year since (a) you can't see our house from the road anyway and (b) we plan to hit up the after Christmas sales on decorations to stock up for next year. I took a couple pictures of the kids decorating but I just don't feel like getting them uploaded right now.

3 - I do like to check out the insanity of Black Friday shopping, although don't normally participate. Around 4:00 we went to the mall to see all the crazy people. We also wanted to say hello to Santa too. We are going to wait on the official picture of the kids with Santa (which I am sure this year will have two very terrified kids in it) but we did want to have a little Santa preview. Marcus has been practicing his "Ho ho ho!" every time I ask what Santa says and I told him all day that he needed to tell Santa what he wanted for Christmas. From the safety of my arms he did say hello to Santa, declined Santa's offer to have a seat on his knee, and whispered very quietly to me that he wants yellow presents. (If anyone sees any plain yellow wrapping paper anywhere, please tell me. I have had no luck.) From the safety of Greg's arms, Will pretty much hid his face from Santa and refused eye contact. We said bye to Santa and walked away at which point Will piped up with all kinds of confidence and yelled, "Bye bye Ho!" Greg and I giggled the rest of the way through the mall.

4 - We got our first Christmas card today! Thank you very much from the person who sent the card, since I know you read my blog. Beautiful card. Umm... but it is only the day after Thanksgiving!! It isn't even December yet!! Sure, I do have my Christmas tree up and I do have my Christmas shopping done, but I thought we had a few more days before it was Christmas card season.

5 - I kept telling the kids that we put presents under the Christmas tree. Marcus started giving me lots and lots of invisible presents retrieved from under the tree and soon Will was in on the game. The gift giving went on for quite some time and I was proud recipient of several fantastic gifts such as swiss cheese, an ax, and world peace.

6 - After dinner this evening, we headed downstairs to the (makeshift, unfinished) game room and decided to see how the wood burning stove worked. Greg made a ring around the stove with some logs and explained to the kids that they were not to go inside that area under any circumstances. We kept a very watchful eye on them but they didn't once cross the barrier. After the previous owners of the house accepted our offer, they asked if they could purchase the wood burner from us for a decent amount of money. As I sat there smelling that smokey wood burning smell, curled up on the couch with the pooch, I knew there was no way I could trade that for a fist full of money. The kids are all nestled snug in their beds and Greg and I are getting ready to head back downstairs for some snuggling and tv watching.


Happy Thanksgiving!

Hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving! We headed off to Greg's parents' house yesterday and were very thankful to be with our family. We ate yummy food and watched football. The best football game was the one that Marcus and Will were playing in the living room that had some rules that I wasn't quite sure of. There was lots of falling down, laughing, one instance of tears, and everyone won. Good game guys! I didn't take any pictures though.

Great day but really, is there any way Thanksgiving will ever be as great as it was last year? To read about it click here and to see pictures click here. As a synopsis though, last Thanksgiving day was the first day that Will was home with our family forever and my friends all chipped in and delivered a full Thanksgiving dinner (for 10 people) to us. Thinking about that day now still makes me tear up!


Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Happy Turkey Day!

I went to do my regular early morning grocery shopping yesterday afternoon and was befuddled as to why the aisles were packed at 8:30 in the morning. Oh yeah! It is the week where we all stuff ourselves silly! Not that I really forgot, it was just that I wasn't expecting the store to be that busy that early on a Monday morning.

I took to the stores this weekend. I had been trying to get together with a couple of my friends and as it worked out, they were both free this weekend. Saturday it was lunch and some shopping with one friend and Sunday it was lunch and some shopping with another friend. Poor Greg was forced to feed the kids lunch, put them down for nap, and then spend about an hour alone with them when they woke up. I figured since I spend about 10 hours alone with them most days of the week, he could probably manage 1 hour two days. He could. He did. And I am officially done with Christmas shopping! Almost. I have to pick up a pack of Pokemon cards and locate some yellow wrapping paper since a certain child of mine is now completely obsessed with the idea of yellow presents.

When I got back from shopping on Saturday, I discovered while I was gone that Greg rearranged our furniture in the basement. The result is a lot more room for the kids to run around and play down there. He also set up a little sewing/craft area for me. Sunday morning the kids were enjoying the new setup and I actually sat down at my sewing machine for the first time in months and did a few stitches.

When I got back from shopping on Sunday, somewhere between getting endless hugs and getting endless kisses from Marcus, I asked him what they did while I was gone. I wasn't expecting an answer but for the first time he told me. He said he and Will napped and then they had snack.

Will has been potty training himself which I am encouraging but not that crazy about. He is all about going number two on the potty. I can't remember the last time I changed a poopy diaper. Last week was rough because he kept deciding that he needed to sit on the potty for fun. It most certainly isn't fun for me since I am the one who has to get his clothes and diaper on and off and get him to wash his hands and try to convince Marcus that going potty is not a competition and he will just have to wait his turn. I took to leaving Will stranded on the potty for a little while every time he decided to go. That kinda got the idea into his head that sitting on the potty is for taking care of business, not for entertainment purposes.

I read a friend's blog recently who mentioned that her daughter has taken to removing her pants. Must be something in the air. Will's foster family told us that he would usually sleep in just a diaper but to be careful because even had 11 months old, he knew how to get it off. His fondness for clothing removal has continued. He sometimes still sleeps in a sleep sack that zips from the top down to make it more difficult for toddlers to remove it. Will has figured it out. Zipper down pj's have even become a source of entertainment for the kid when I am not watching. He unzips them and if they have a snap at the top to keep kids from unzipping them, he undoes the snap too. It is rather chilly around here at night and he always kicks his blanket off, so he really needs to at least have his pj's on. Being the smart momma that I am, I have managed to stay one step ahead of him though. Currently he is wearing a pair of zip down pj's... with a t-shirt over top. He looks totally ridiculous but his clothes stay on during the night, he stays warm and cozy, and I don't have to fear getting him out of bed with the contents of his diaper all over the place.

Will knows the color yellow. Sometimes he speaks in 2-3 word sentences. He did spill out a 4 word sentence over the weekend and I can't remember what it was. He tries to sing his ABC's and Twinkle Twinkle Little Star. The kid is hysterical with a football. It is scary how much he has picked up from us watching football games on TV. He will tuck the ball in his arm and take off running in this hunched over position, protecting the ball at all times. He dodges and weaves and usually ends up getting tackled by some invisible player that apparently lurks around our house.

Marcus knows the colors yellow (big surprise there), red, blue, and sometimes green. He has pointed out pink things to me a couple times as well. Everyday I hear new words. I mentioned the other day that I was going Christmas shopping and he started talking all about getting Grammy a yellow present and presents for Marcus too and ho ho ho. Many times I have barked out all these things that we needed to do before leaving and Marcus apparently listens to each and everything I say and won't let me forget to do something. Twice now he has reminded me that I needed to take a snack with me when we left the house. He's always been a fan of helping and now his helping is getting even more useful. He sets the table and takes dirty laundry to the laundry room and puts baskets of clean laundry in the right room. He is very excited that he taught himself how to fold wash cloths and hand towels. I'm very excited about this too!

So if you made it this far with my rambling, Happy Thanksgiving to you!


Friday, November 21, 2008

Santa and his Kinky Balls

Last night we went out to the local mall to view the celebrations involved with Santa's arrival at the mall. It was cold and snowy. I felt like I was in the movie "The Christmas Story" where Ralphie is complaining about all the same stupid floats from last year and his dad eventually yells, "Shut up, Ralphie!"

My niece was with the group of cheerleaders who began Santa's escort. They were passing out candy canes and some stringed jingle bells. Now, you might say jingle bells and I might say jingle bells but Marcus calls them kinky balls. Then came my high school alumni marching band. Up next was Mr. and Mrs. Clause in a sleigh pulled by two giant white horses. Marcus was wide eyed with wonderment although I think that was mainly a result of the two horses and not the two people in the sleigh.

Greg took the day off work today. We were all lounging around the house this morning when Marcus decided for us that we were going outside. After getting together all the snow gear, bundling the kids up from head to foot, and lots of shouting, "I can't put my arms down!" we headed out the door. We weren't sure how Will would be with the snow since his idea of fun doesn't always coincide with the general public's idea of fun. About two minutes in the great outdoors and he decided he hated it. That was until Greg got out the sleds...

Then he was decidedly neutral on the concept of being surrounded by snowflakes. Marcus pulled me around on the sled for a little bit. Then it was time to tackle a hill. Our old house had no sled riding hills. The only possibility was this tiny little hill that ended with a fence right at the bottom. The only issue about our new yard was figuring out which hill would be optimal. Sled riding was a hit with the entire family. There was much rejoicing and cheers of, "More more more!!" and that was just me! Now we just need more snow so we can go faster!


Wednesday, November 19, 2008

The Weather Outside is Frightful

There is no denying it. Winter is here. There is so much to love about winter! The snow! The crisp cool air! The holiday season! The... uh... hmm... there has to be something else favorable... hmm... So maybe winter was a whole lot nicer pre-active toddlers that need to run.

I woke up yesterday to this:

While walking out to take the picture, I saw tracks from three deer in the snow. I've been waiting to see some deer in our yard. Apart from a quick glimpse of one running away a few nights ago, no such luck. I got the kids out of bed and all of my babies were in a dazed wonderment about what they saw out the window.

Over the weekend we started getting ready for our indoor confinement for the next five months. We reassembled our ball pit/sliding board thingy that my kids got for Christmas last year.

Our basement was in the early stages of being finished when we bought the house. Even though it isn't pretty, it still is quite functional for a play area. I have a feeling we are going to be doing lots of playing down there.

About 10 hours after getting up yesterday and snapping that picture of the kids looking out the window, Marcus ran to the window again. He started yelling, "Deer! Deer! Deer!!" About 15 feet from the edge of our porch was a deer just hanging out. I ran for my camera but the pretty lady had moved before I got back. (As excited as I was, you would think that I never saw a deer before in my life.) All I managed to get was this bad shot through the glass of my side door.


One Year

Where were you a year ago? I was at the US Embassy in Guatemala crossing the final t's and dotting the final i's that would make Will our son. Has it really been a year?? What a great year! It has been filled with smiles and endless laughter all wrapped up with lots of challenges and frustration... and I wouldn't change it for anything. Although I love the spontaneous hugs I get from Will now, I do miss these days:


Sunday, November 16, 2008

Christmas Toddler Style

I was telling Marcus about Christmas today - in toddler terms. I said it was Jesus's birthday and that Jesus is so cool that everyone gets presents on his birthday. Marcus said, "Marcus presents too?"

"Yep, Marcus gets presents too! What kind of presents do you want?" I asked.

Marcus said, "Yellow presents!"

There you have it. If you are trying to figure out what to get Marcus for Christmas, just get him some yellow presents.


Saturday, November 15, 2008

Hot Date

Greg and I finally decided to take advantage of the fact that we now have free and trustworthy babysitting options just a few miles away. Since we haven't seen a movie for over 2 years, we invited my mom over to hang out with her super cute grandsons while we went out on a hot date. We were hoping to sit in the last row of the movie theater and make out but when we got to our movie, the last row was taken. Instead, we just held hands and actually watched the movie. The movie ended prior to our bedtime so we took advantage of the fact that our children were being supervised by a third party and stopped at Denny's for some ice cream. Thanks for your help, mom!


Friday, November 14, 2008

Budding Obsession?

I've been waiting a while to figure out just what Will is into. I mean, he is into EVERYTHING being that he is a toddler, but I don't know what exactly his interests lay. Finally I think we are getting a clue. Will likes football - American football, particularly the Steelers. His attention span for television is microscopic yet he watched the entire first half of the game last Sunday. He can spot a football player while skimming through commercials in super fast speed on the DVR. He can spot a football on a piece of junk mail with only a split second glance. He has remarkable speed and accuracy while throwing his little football. The accuracy is so great in fact that he was not permitted to play with it for a large portion of the day yesterday because he kept aiming for and hitting the television. Will seems to do most things right handed but when it comes to throwing a football, he is a lefty. I went out for a dentist appointment the other day, and when I came back, Greg and Will were playing football. Although Greg taught Will to say, "Hike!" Will put his own special spin on it and yells, "HEEK!"


Thursday, November 13, 2008

25 More Things

Yep, here it is. Another 25 Things I Never Said Until I Had Kids - a list of phrases that Greg and I have actually muttered in our household since becoming parents. For the previous lists, click here, here, and here.

76. You don't throw frogs at people when they are eating.
77. If you hit Mommy's computer one more time, I'm going to... do something that will make you wish you hadn't.
78. If you hammer your brother again you're in timeout.
79. That's a watermelon, not Daddy.
80. As soon as I locate your hands in these cheese mittens, you're cleaning up the floor.
81. No pooping in the dining room. You are going to need to go to the kitchen to do that.
82. Don't throw turkeys at her while she's cooking.
83. You lost your sandwich because you thought it was an airplane.
84. Do not put fire equipment in your mouth. Unless you work for the circus. Which you don't.
85. Yeah, that looks like a potty but it's actually a gravy boat.
86. I'll have one of my lactating friends come over and shoot him in the face with it.
87. Watch out or you're going to get pee pee on your head.
88. You probably shouldn't blow your nose in a zebra.
89. Dinner is ready as soon as everyone has pants on.
90. My goodness. You smacked your face with a toilet.
91. Mommy will help you in a minute. Right now I am on the phone and holding an egg.
92. Let the poopies out!
93. I was going to say, he didn't even lick mine much today.
94. They have to be hooking up because no woman would voluntarily take a man's monkey to a dog show.
95. Is this better than pooping on a log?
96. Your penis isn't yellow. Your penis is creamy just like the rest of you.
97. Oh my goodness! You guys are a naked-boy choo choo!
98. Did you just fart out of your mouth?
99. If you continue to be mean to your brother you'll be sitting up here with the produce.
100. Must have been a rough poop: it gave you a bloody nose.



Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Prayers for Karla

Please head over to Karla's blog and give her and her parents Jennifer and Jason some prayers. After a LONG journey, Karla finally came home last week. By the weekend she was in the hospital with respiratory problems. Stay strong!


Splishy Splashy

Sure, they fight sometimes, but they sure do love each other!


Sunday, November 09, 2008


There has been a million little things happening around here that really aren't worthy of their own blog post. I keep putting off writing them but here it goes.

- I'm excited about Christmas this year. I was pretty excited last year too since both boys were home and Marcus at least was old enough to open his own presents. Now we have two boys that will be digging into everyone's presents. I'm so excited that I already got a lot of my shopping done. I am completely done with buying for Marcus and only have two more things to get for Will. Both of those items are sitting in my cart at an online store and are ready to be purchased. I suspected that this year I wouldn't be able to buy things for Marcus while he was with me. It was confirmed. I tried to distract him while I tucked the item underneath the cart. The item was train related. When we got home Marcus kept saying, "Choo choo car. Get it." I kept pretending I had no idea what he was talking about.

- A couple weeks ago, Marcus started using the word "both". I held up two books and asked which one he wanted to read and he said, "Both books!" Now he talks a lot about both hands and both feet and both toys. It is one of the more complex observations and words that he uses.

- We had some great weather this week which meant lots of playing outside. Unfortunately it felt like November today and when we went outside we were in winter coats and hats. Earlier this week we were in t-shirts. I love our yard. We can spend so much time out there and move around from activity to activity. There is the play house, the swing set, the porch, the garage (which is great for riding toys), the woods, and just lots of room to RUN! The other day I was trying to do some yard work and the kids were quite happy entertaining themselves. One big downfall of our big yard, is lots of yard work. We inherited this:

That is what I get to see when I sit on my front porch. Really, what in the world am I suppose to do with that? There are weeds in there that are taller than I am. Sure, I am not that tall as far as people go, but as weeds go, I am a giant. I thought I would get to work at clearing it out a little now so maybe in the spring it won't be quite as scary. I just had to keep my head down while I worked because if I looked up and saw how much more there was to do, I would be too overwhelmed to continue. I got a patch cleared out that was approximately 5 feet by 10 feet. It looks like I did nothing. While I worked, mostly the kids did this:

- I now know what "boys will be boys" means. I remember wrestling with my brother when I was a kid and I figured that it would happen regularly with two boys in the house. However, I wasn't expecting it to be happening all the time already. We quickly went from having a few instances of rough housing between the boys to them constantly tackling each other. This results in a few bonked heads but mostly it is just fun. Will has decided now that the best way to get Marcus's attention is to randomly run up to him and tackle him. The only person who enjoys this is Will.

- Marcus has decided that he doesn't need to take naps. I was trying to encourage shorter naps because he was having problems going to bed at night. It kinda backfired though. A couple times he has gone without napping and remained civil for the rest of the day. That is usually not the case. I make him stay in his bed for 2 hours during nap time and leave it up to him whether he naps or not, so at least he gets a rest. I wouldn't really care if he napped or not except that he really needs to nap and I get to deal with the repercussions of him not napping.

- One day last week Marcus decided not to nap and really needed to nap. I ended up putting him back in bed around 4:45 because he was just a mess. Greg wasn't home from work yet and I got to spend about 30 minutes alone with just Will. I really never get to spend time with just one of my kids. Will was a totally different kid than I thought he was. He was having these really lengthy conversations with me that sounded like, "blah dippy dap dodo la tata outside dobba doob dappy couch la la teta dipdap sky". It was a great story. He used lots of hand gestures and everything. He didnt have to worry about being interrupted or someone screaming over top of his voice. Greg came home and ended up getting out the video camera so we could capture some solo Will in action.

- Karla is home! After a LONG time in the process, at last they are together forever. I probably should have mentioned this awhile back but somehow got caught up in my own life. Go check out their blog!


Friday, November 07, 2008

Election Day

Unless you have been living in a cave, I am sure you know by now that there was a presidential election in the US this week. This is only the third presidential election that I have been old enough to vote in. (Yes, I am youngin'.) This was the first presidential election that I really supported one of the candidates. In the past elections, I tended to be more against one guy so I voted for the guy that I didn't particularly like but was not the guy I really didn't like.

I took the kids with me to vote. Just me and the kids. I realized after the fact that it was probably an insane thing to do. I pulled up to the polls and there were cars everywhere. We had to wait in line for about 20 minutes. The kids were being really good. So good that I even let an elderly lady cut in front of us. I told the kids all about voting on the way, knowing they were unlikely to absorb any of it. The entire time we waited in line Marcus kept asking if he and Will could vote. After about the tenth time, I told him that in four more presidential elections he could vote.

When we got home from voting, it was time for a photo shoot to capture the day my Guatemalan Americans got to do something very American.

This shot is called, "What?!?! My guy might not win???"

"I'll just self medicate my anxieties with some of this 'funny tea'."

"But you HAVE to share your tea! Please?"

"But look how cute I look when I cock my head to the side."


Saturday, November 01, 2008

Adoption Day and All Saints Day

Today we celebrated our Family Day, a day that we plan to celebrate each year to honor our sons joining our family. Marcus and Will both have blessed us in so many ways and they will never know all the hearts that they have touched. So, let's celebrate!

While we were in Guatemala, we got several gifts for our kids and plan to give them one each year on Family Day. This year the gift was rather unexciting for them but they were still happy to show off how cute they looked in their new shirts.

Next event was a short photo shoot so we could do this cute little thing that follows to show how our boys have grown:

Marcus and Hopkin Green Frog the first day at home 11/3/06:

Marcus a year later 10/14/07:

Marcus today (I told him to look at Mommy and smile and he actually did!)

Will and Hopkin Blue Frog on his first day home 11-22-07:

Will today:

Then it was time for the real fun to begin. We were off to The Children's Museum in Pittsburgh! I have never been there unless you count the time I was there in third grade for a field trip and it was a planetarium at the time. I have heard great things about the place so it was about time that we checked it out.

First stop was the cafeteria. It was snack time when we arrived. Then we were off to Mr. Roger's Neighborhood. We got there when the place was opening so there weren't too many other kids there for awhile. Marcus and I decided to climb around inside the wall.

Then we headed to the second floor where all the activities were geared towards infants and toddlers. I was enjoying it too...

Then off to the third floor to play in water! I came prepared and brought extra shoes for the kids and decided they could just go without pants. (The raincoats are provided by the museum.)

After about 45 minutes of splashing around, it was lunchtime and Marcus headed towards the elevators proclaiming, "Something else!" Back to the cafeteria we went.

There was still lots more to see on the first floor after lunch, and it was some really cool stuff. Prior to lunch the kids were having a lot of fun but since they were way more interested in Mr. Rogers and pouring water from one cup to another, there were times when Greg and I were the ones ready to move on to something else. The rest of the first floor was a lot of fun for everyone. We ended up spending about 4 hours at the museum. We might have even stayed longer but Will was making it very clear to every single guest at the museum that he was completely done.

The day was not over though. November 1 not only was Family Day this year, but it also happens to be All Saints Day. Here is a brief note on All Saints Day that I adapted from Guatadopt.
"If one wants to celebrate Guatemala's holiday it should be "All Saints Day" (Dia de Todosantos), which is celebrated on Nov. 1.

Guatemalans from Guate City and other urban areas prepare "fiambre". Fiambre is the central element of Nov. 1st, and people talk about "celebrating fiambre" or ask "where will you eat fiambre." All Guatemalans visit the cemetery, clean their loved ones' tombs, give them a fresh coat of paint, decorate them, put flowers and have a meal right there.

That is when the kite flying happens (except Santiago Sacatepequez where the kite flying is an event by itself). The air is very festive and children participate in the celebration. Everywhere people prepare special meals to eat with their dead.

Todosantos is a wonderful example of how Guatemalans keep close ties with their dead. Visiting the cemetery constitutes a normal outing and Nov. 1st is the most important day of the year to visit and honor loved ones. Eating a meal at the cemetery is a sign of these close ties and the fact that the "frontier" between the living and the dead is more fluid than in other cultures."

That being said, the next stop after the Children's Museum was, of course, the cemetery. The kids and Greg took a nap during the car ride to rest up. I don't think I ever realized just how big the cemetery here is. It is huge. I hadn't been there in years and I warned Greg it might take me a bit to find our family plots. Greg was quite impressed with the massive size of the cemetery having never been there. Only a few minutes into the search and I did locate my father's side of the family. Very close to their plot is a headstone shaped like a dog. I always used to visit it when I was a kid. The story (don't know if it is true or not but still a fun story) is that someone wanted to be buried with their dog but the cemetery didn't allow it so they put up a statue instead. The boys liked the dog and gave him some hugs.

On our way back to the car, Greg spotted this gravestone. (FYI, my maiden name was Wylie.)

Don't get scared but apparently I have been dead since 1878.

Next stop was to my grandparents' plot on my mom's side of the family. Not sure if this is true or just some story I made up, but I think their plot is right by the point of highest elevation in the town. Even if I am wrong, the view is still a great one.

Even though on All Saints Day, people generally eat in the cemetery, it really wasn't our plan. However, it was snack time, there was a bench, and I had some snacks. So...

We didn't have anything else planned for the day since I never got around to seeing if I could find some kites to fly, so we were headed to the mall to do some window shopping. Greg spotted a deer on our way out of the cemetery so we went to visit him. The deer in the cemetery are really friendly since I guess dead people aren't much of a threat. (Yes, I know that was probably not very PC but it was kinda funny.) We pulled up right next to this little guy and put the windows down. He came up to us for a closer look but decided that the grass he was munching on was way more interesting than we were.

In closing, Happy Family Day!! Marcus has now been with us for two years and we are coming up on the one year anniversary of Will joining our family. I look at my kids sometimes and I think of all the miracles in life that brought them to me. With adoption, there is just so much left up to chance or fate or God, depending on what you believe. All those tiny little choices - what agency to use, what country to adopt from, when to sign those papers, and what child ultimately gets referred to you - somehow lead you down exactly the right road to have the perfect child for your family in your family. Thank you, God.


Happy (Belated) Halloween!!

Halloween has come and gone. It was a week's worth of celebration and I am exhausted. Last weekend we had some friends over, followed by a playgroup Halloween party, with a birthday party for my dad thrown in, and concluding with trick-or-treating last night. We have the most perfect neighborhood for trick-or-treating here. Our lot is connected to the mecca of all Halloween action in this huge housing plan. My brother used to come over here to trick-or-treat when he was a kid because the candy potential was HUGE. We are talking HUNDREDS of kids and HUNDREDS of houses. And the best part, according to the other people that live off our little hidden street, not a single kid ever comes down to our house looking for treats. So, we get to reap all the benefits and not hand out a single candy bar of our own! That being said, we left our neighborhood last night and went to trick-or-treat in the neighborhood where I grew up since I knew all the people there would enjoy seeing our kids and our kids weren't really in it for the treats this year anyway.

My niece and nephew came along with us as well. They had trick-or-treating in their neighborhood on Thursday but they wanted to spend some time with their cousins. We managed to hit up the whole street (less than 20 houses on the street) and Marcus and Will insisted on carrying their own treats the entire way. The best stop along our way was at the neighbors' who were handing out (adult) beverages to the adults. When we got back to my parents', the kids dug into some Cracker Jacks before calling it a night.

Hope everyone had a great Halloween!