Sunday, October 30, 2011

A Trick and Two Treats

When the going gets tough, I get busy.  I deal with stress by putting it into overdrive at home.  So, this week, I dealt with my troubles by making some of the fun Halloween ideas I had on my pinterest boards.

The first project was treats for Shelby's classmates.  It was super easy and fun to do with the girls.  The tutorial can be found here.  I added a ribbon through the top with a tag saying "from shelby".  The only problem was that I bought the "big pack", so the printable labels weren't quite big enough.

Next were some fun deviled egg eyeballs.  These turned out better than I expected and were a big hit!

Finally, I made one more treat for the special trick-or-treaters in the neighborhood.  The lucky ones will be getting one of these:

The not-so-lucky ones will be getting one of these:  (I ran out of white chocolate...)

The tutorial can be found at one of my favorite websites,  I made the mistake of letting Shelby and Haley help out on this one, and I think Bryon was ready to throw the whole mess in the trash after the eighth time I yelled, "Stop eating all the eyeballs!! Stop touching that!!  No, you can't eat another cookie!!"  

Enough with the Halloween creations.  Time to move on to Christmas!  Just wait 'til I have another stressful week to see what's up my sleeve.

Sugar High Part III

Before babbling about the THIRD Halloween party, I want to say last week was one of the worst weeks of 2011.  There is NO way I could have made it through without such wonderful people in my life.  My mom watched the kids while I was recovering.  Our awesome nanny, Gloria, helped me prepare tons of freezer food.  My husband was the shoulder I needed to cry on and was the rock that kept me focused.  And, then, there are my incredible co-workers.  Seriously, how many people are lucky enough to work with their great friends??  Especially ones that send you these:

Lori, Annette, Anneva, and Emily ROCK!

So, on to the party!  Ms. Annette had six adorable munchkins over to celebrate. We had a great time decorating pumpkins, playing "Pin the tail on the cat", and busting the pinata.  Haley was an absolute riot, taking off her costume and running around with just pink tights on for half the night.  All she could talk about on the way home was "'Nett.  Party.  FUN!"  Thanks, Annette, for entertaining my crew!
Who's ready to party?

Fruit of the Loom?

No one was injured!

Go, Haley!

The "blindfold" completes the dinosaur costume

Pin the tail on the cat

Our little artist

Ethan's creation

Friday, October 28, 2011

Sugar High, Part II

Mother-of-the-year, Bev, recently had a Halloween party at her house.  Talk about one brave Mama!  All of the Pfaff girls had a blast eating, crafting, and decorating.  My summary in pictures:
Pre-party posing

Mom, having her own fun!

Look closely, it's a jack-o-lantern pizza (a la Papa Murphy)

Hostess with the Mostest, Bev

"My dog bone cupcake" a la Shelby

"Is there a little something on my face?" a la Haley

Sugar High, Part I

Tuesday night was open house at Shelby's school.  Festivities included:

  • Fall Festival Pictures by the "paparazzi"
  • Deep Sea Bean Bag toss

Is softball in her future?
Just look at that follow-through!
  • Pumpkin Patch

  • Pumpkin Bowling

Is bowling in her future?
  • Halloween Tattoos
Hopefully temporary tattoos are the only kind in her future!

  • Fishing Fun (the kids "caught" bags of goldfish)
  • Cake Walk (where mom actually scored some amazing cookies made by Ms. "Macole")
  • Treasure Hunt
Look at my loot!  A spider ring!
  • And, to top off the sugar supply, they got cotton candy at the end.  

Strawberry made by Monica, watermelon made by Children's Place

As a side note, I learned that my friend Jessica harbors deep hatred for Halloween.  She largely blames that fact that her mother sewed or pieced together costumes for her instead of letting her buy one from the store.  Jessica made it very clear to me that I shouldn't be sewing costumes for my kids.  Sorry, Jess, but it is so darn fun sewing something that doesn't have to be perfect!  

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

The Power of Four

Four girls.  Four days.  Four years since they had seen each other.  Such was my much-needed girls' weekend in Colorado!
Liberated women drinking some libations

I grew up in a teeny-tiny town in the Texas Panhandle. Spearman, to be exact...ever heard of it?  Nope?  You're not alone. It's rumored that there are more cows than people in the whole county.  What was cool about growing up in such a small place was that most of the classmates I started Kindergarten with ended up in my graduating class of 1992.

Blink and you'll miss it

Four of us from that class of fifty-something were able to meet up this past weekend.  It's always amazing to see my friends, Leslie, Suzanne, and Jessica.  Since they've known all my business since birth, they are friends like no other.  It's impossible for any of us to be anything other than ourselves when we get together.  I can't hide the fact that I was in the band, wore huge glasses until the 8th grade, cried my entire 5th grade year because of my parents' divorce, or my somewhat amusing dating history.  The same goes for my friends, but I won't expose the skeletons in their closets! 

Our four days together were proof positive that laughter is indeed the best medicine.  We laughed until we cried during our "Yoga for Dummies" class.  Like Suzanne said, it was just like we were back in the Methodist Church in 1988, giggling until one of our moms or dads would come sit beside us to get us to behave.  Our poor yoga instructor was trying to get us to center our "chakras", and all we were doing was trying not to laugh.

We also howled at all the new words we learned:

  • Yurt, I learned, is some sort of tent set up in remote areas for hikers to rest and recover.  After Jessica explained the term, we would get a kick out of using "yurt" in a sentence.  
Excuse me while I go center my chakras in the yurt!
  • Speakeasy, Leslie learned, was a termed used during prohibition for a secret bar.  I thought everyone knew that, but I guess I was wrong.  Leslie doesn't get out much (ha!).    So, we went to "Wednesday's Pie", where the hostess asked if we were there for "pie".  I guess we made the cut, because she took us to the back, where the decor was total throw-back 1920's.  

Warning!  That silver door leads to the world's dandiest bar!

  • Namaste, a common term used at the end of a yoga class, meaning "God is great" or "What comes around, goes around" or "May the force be with you".  Hell, we were all laughing too hard to get what the teacher said, but "Namaste" did make for good laughs as we all murdered its pronunciation with our Texas twang--na-MAST-ay was more like it!

What's great about this group is that I am a few years behind them in the child-bearing business.  Their kids are all older than mine, so they had lots of valuable advice for this newbie.  In one of my very first blog posts,  they contributed to the list of rules Bryon and I had for parenting.  Here are the new rules they inspired me to try:

1.  Pull-up diapers at night might be the reason Shelby has so many accidents during the day.  No more Pull-ups!
2.  NEVER compare the kids in front of them.  For example, don't say, "Shelby sat quietly for 30 minutes.  Why can't you do the same, Haley?"
3.  Make breakfast mandatory.  Every morning, have a routine, and the day will go more smoothly.
4.  Have "couch time" to get the kids to stay in bed at night.  One reason they might be coming into our bedroom at night is to see mommy and daddy together.  A way to curb this is to set aside about 5 minutes of each day as "couch time".  Mom and Dad sit out the couch and talk, while the kids can do whatever they want except talk.

There is NO way the weekend could have happened without our incredible significant others. A HUGE thank-you goes out to Dennis, Bryon, Luke, Larry, and Coy.  We owe you guys one!