Sunday, October 31, 2010

Actual Hallowe'en Day: Part 2

As darkness approached, Declan transformed into the purple crayon yet again, and we headed to a neighborhood Trunk-or-Treat.
Papa and Yaya came along.

There were all sorts of fun games and feats of strength the children had to perform in order to earn their candy.
Here you can see Declan master the ring toss.



We met up with Declan's friend Abbey who was masquerading as an adorable Alice in Wonderland.

After Trunk-or-Treat we returned to our neighbourhood for a little actual trick-or-treating. Declan rode his Buzz Lightyear ATV all around the neighborhood and seemed to be thrilled to be riding around a) on the streets b) in the dark and c) without a helmet. He did so great with his actual "trick-or-treat" greeting. His speech therapist, Miss Abby has been working hard on that phrase this week, and we have heard it morph from "trick-or-eat" last week into a pretty strong straight up "trick-or-treat". Our neighborhood was a bit of a bust - a lot of empty bowls left out on unattended front porches. One old lady actually gave Declan a quarter. Seriously? I guess she ran out of buffalo nickels.

 I can make mock her with impunity on here as I'm pretty sure anyone still handing out quarters on Hallowe'en isn't on the internet.

All in all, it was a wonderful hallowe'en. I have a strong suspicion that I am going to be hearing some clamoring tomorrow along the lines of "go trick-or-treat", or at the very least "put crayon on". We shall see.


Actual Hallowe'en Day: Part 1

We started off the day with Hallowe'en doughnuts at Krispy Kreme.
Then off to one last trip to the pumpkin patch before October ends.

We had a swinging good time.

It was all the usual pumpkin patch entertainment, with tractor rides and hay mazes, when off in the distance Declan spotted the cow train - a line of cattle cars made out of 40 gallon drums pulled by a tractor.

The caption to this picture was "Mommy toooooo..."

So I got to take some action shots from aboard the cow train.


Four times.

All this and we haven't even put on the crayon costume yet.

Preschool Parade

So Friday was Declan's preschool parade.  Basically all the kids aged 5 - 21 that go to Access sit down in the cafeteria together with all the parents of the preschool kids.  Everyone then claps and cheers as the preschool kids walk by in their Hallowe'en costumes. 

This is Declan with his classmates walking by in the parade.

Click here to see the actual parade.

There really was nothing to it, but I felt ridiculously proud of that little purple crayon. And doesn't he seem to be pretty proud of himself too?

That afternoon I got to go back for the class Hallowe'en party. It was my first time getting to see Declan's class in action, and it was so much fun to see him do crafts, have snack and then have circle time.  He has a great teacher, Ms. Suzanne, and everything about her class is just delightful.  I wish I could sit in everyday. 

circle time



Saturday, October 30, 2010

Something worth doing...

I take exception to the adage that something worth doing, is worth doing well. Some things worth doing should be done hastily, with hot glue. Take Hallowe'en costumes for example.  Exhibit A:  this clown costume I made for my friend Carl- the slapdash construction really gives it that esoteric thrown-together-in-a-lonely-guys-basement vibe that really ratchets up the creepy factor.  You just can't get that effect with straight seams.

This year my sloppy costume workmanship also saved me some heartache. I came up with this really cute Wonder Pets costume idea for Declan since that's his favourite show.   The Wonder Pets are a turtle, duck, and guinea pig who travel around the world using teamwork to save animals in trouble.   I made Declan a Linny the Guinea pig costume, and then made Tuck and Ming Ming costumes for our two dogs, and then converted Declan's wagon into the WonderPets signature ride, the Flyboat. 

  Cute yes? Sweet to make all these costumes so that Declan can experience the wonder of bringing his favorite tv characters to life with the help of the family dogs, yes?   Well Declan won't go near his costume. He will not put on his homemade guinea pig costume, for love or chocolate. Not for a millisecond.  I put a stuffed panda bear in Declan's costume just to photograph it for posterity.  Declan did not mind being replaced at all. 

The only costume he will abide is his half-price store-bought K-mart costume that he picked out himself:  the ultra-flammable polyester purple crayon outfit.   Now if I had made his Wonder Pets costume with care as well as love, used a pattern, measured something, taken the time to cut in straight lines, sewed instead of glued and stapled, I might really be kicking myself right now for wasting a tremendous amount of time. As it is, I can appreciate what a cute purple crayon he makes! Adorable!

Moral of the story:  we feel so much pressure to do things well, but sometimes it's okay to just do things. You will be seeing a lot of that purple crayon as I catch up with pictures from all 5 Hallowe'en parties we went to this week.  So things worked out - no way that guinea pig costume would have held together for a whole week of two-year old candy-fuelled mayhem. 


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Happy 2.5th Birthday Declan!

It was Declan's half-birthday on Sunday, and I had meant to do something fun to commorate the occasion, seeing as how his 2nd birthday party got cancelled (twice!) this year.  But I forgot, and didn't notice until it was 2.5 plus one day.  Oops.  Lucky for us we try and have big fun every day, so on his 2.5th birthday we went to the Rendezvous Festival at Pinnacle Mountain, came home and painted pictures, then went for a picnic dinner in Alsopp park with the Adams and the Gehringers, and then finally came home to smores and a campfire in the driveway with the neighbours. I couldn't have planned a better celebration if I had done it consciously. 

The Rendezvous festival was a recreation of the life of settlers and Native Americans in 1824.  In other words, larping.  They had some cool teepees set up and demos of hide tanning, blacksmithing and all that sort of thing.  It was practically educational.

Declan's favourite part was Ye Olde Pioneere Bouncy House.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

State Fair

We took our annual trip to the Arkansas State Fair, to see what new things they are deep frying.  (A.  Hershey Kisses)  Papa and Yaya came along, and Declan had a great time.   He enjoyed a lot more of the rides this year than he did last year - he wanted to try everything, and only the caterpillar roller coaster seemed to be a tad too fast for him. 


  Remember last year when Declan was terrified of fuzzy baby ducklings?   Well this year he's poking them like it's nothing.  

Papa worked hard to win Declan a giant stuffed tiger.

Declan rode that tiger home!