Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Halloween Week: Part 3 - Pumpkin Carving

This is the first year we introduced Meredith to pumpkin carving. She has fallen in love with pumpkins this year, so we thought it would be fun. However, we had a few problems...1) Meredith hates anything yucky. 2) Neither Neal nor I had carved a pumpkin in forever, so we were a little rusty. All in all, the pumpkin turned out cute, but there was less family bonding than I would have envisioned, although with such a little princess, I should have guessed!

Probably as close as Meredith got to the yucky inside of the pumpkin. I, however, had orange goo up to my elbows!
The finished product - she still wasn't in the mood to really participate, so this is the best picture we could get!

Halloween Week: Part 2...Frst Fest!

Our church has a great yearly carnival, and this year I got to help coordinate it. The event was a huge success for everyone and of course, that included Meredith! Gigi and Papa decided to come too, so they all got to spend a great afternoon together.

Minnie Mouse Meredith loved the Trunk 'r Treating! Daddy taught her to say "Trick or Treat!" which she put to great use!

What a cute picture of Merdith, Papa, and Gigi - especially with Papa in Minnie Mouse ears.

Halloween Week: Part 1

This weekend we decided to go visit the Pumpkin Patch we've been to in past years so that Daddy could experience the fun that we had a few weeks ago. This Pumpkin Patch is at a church and Saturday happened to be their big festival too, so we had even more fun! We ended up getting to take a hay ride, get a puppy tattoo on her cheek and, the best part was the Animal Walk (like a cake walk) - we played lots of times, I was getting a little nervous, even planning how to play the "my two year old really wants one of the thousand prizes you have up there..." card because every time we didn't win, Meredith still jumped up and shouted "Animal!" I had to convince her we had to try again, which she took quite well. Luckily we didn't have to play too much longer before we won. She immediately picked out a turtle, and they have been inseparable ever since. This turtle is so special it is the first animal she has named - and his name, you ask? Jesus.
Meredith loved just running through the pumpkins, and especially playing with all the "baby" pumpkins they had. We got to bring on home that she is excited to color tomorrow!

Meredith also loved this fun scarecrow that she could peek through. She even gave Pinky a turn to take a picture too!

Meredith at the end of the day with her puppy cheek tattoo and of course, her new turtle, Jesus.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Happy Birthday Daddy!

Neal turned the big 3-0 this weekend so we did lots of celebrating! Neal and I got to spend a night out on Friday night with dinner and a movie while Meredith stayed the night with Gigi. Then she came home and we surprised Daddy with Chicken Express for lunch! We followed that up with a tradition I started with Neal 11 years ago (wow -that seems so crazy!) That was the first birthday we celebrated together and I was living in a dorm with no access to an oven to bake a cake, so I bought Hostess cupcakes and candles. The next few years I kept this up even when I made him a cake - it seemed that we officially celebrated on a day other than his actual birthday with the "real" cake, so the cupcakes were just a fun treat on the real day. We even had to spend a few birthdays apart - when I was in Austin and he was back here and when he went to Alaska for work the cupcakes were great because I was able to pack them up for him as a surprise to eat without me.

This year, Meredith got to fully enjoy this tradition and even helped Daddy blow out his candles while singing "Happy Dada, Happy Dada!"

Monday, October 13, 2008


This will be Meredith's 3rd Halloween and every year, I have loved taking her to a pumpkin patch here are my favorite shots of the last 2 years:
She was a trooper even though I made her lay in hay while sleepy - how cute!

A year later she was a little more aware of the hay and less likely to let me put her in it, but she still had fun playing in the pumpkins.

This year we had even more fun at a pumpkin patch in Flower Mound - there were hayrides (Meredith went twice and LOVED every minute - even sitting on the hay bales -this is big progress for my princess!), bounce houses (although, her only response was "no bounce!"), lots of cut out characters (including our faves - Mickey and Barney!), a pumpkin house (where she and my friend's girls spent tons of time just rearranging pumpkins, Christina started considering adding a pumpkin house to her playroom since it kept everyone so busy!), animals, and of course hundreds and hundreds of pumpkins!

Meredith "looking" for a good pumpkin (notice that she is holding her hand above her eye like she is blocking the sun!)
After running at full speed through the pumpkins and shouting "pumpkins" from the moment they were in sight from our car, she decided to just enjoy a moment sitting among them.
Meredith and Sarah hanging out with the Barney gang.
Of course Meredith had to pose with Mickey and Minnie!
Meredith as Pooh dressed as Tigger, I think?
The first of two hay rides.
Meredith taking Rachel for a ride in the wagon. I helped a little.

Redecorating the pumpkin house!

I am thinking that we may have to find another pumpkin patch before the season is over - this was too much fun!

Texas Fight!

Saturday of TX/OU weekend was even more fun as we cheered the Longhorns onto a big victory, taking Texas to #1! We spent the day at Marc and Julie's letting our little girls (future rommates in Jester dorms in 2025) play and have so much fun.

Meredith trying out her skills on Uncle Marc's drums.

The girls loved the food as much as the adults did!

Daddy and Meredith celebrating the victory!

A different start to TX/OU weekend

Just a few years ago, Neal and I would have spent Friday night before the big Texas/OU game hanging out in Dallas with friends and lots and lots of Texas fans. This year, we realized how much our life has changed, when we were instead listening to live music from a 2 year old in sunglasses banging away on a kitty keyboard. I wouldn't have changed this year for anything in the world.

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

National Night Out

Tonight we went to my parent's neighborhood for National Night Out - where you get to know your neighbors, learn about community events, and have the police and fire department come out. As I was heading there, I realized our neighborhood was hosting one too at our park so maybe we should have gone there, but that party didn't have Gigi!

Meredith had a ton of fun eating pizza and cookies, playing games, getting prizes and dancing to the music. There was a bounce house too, but Meredith is a little scared of the noise - she really thought about joining the other kids a few times, but never actually went through with it, but she didn't seem too affected by missing out!

Meredith immediately wanted to join in the fun of a water balloon toss.
She did pretty well catching and throwing the balloon to Gigi, but then...
...the inevitable happened - the balloon broke, she got wet and there were lots of tears.
Amazingly, the egg race was a success (with Gigi's help!) no broken eggs, and no tears here!
Meredith's favorite game was the "cake" walk (I say "cake" walk since there really wasn't any cake to be had, but she did not care one bit!) She loved just running from number to number, then shouting "Freeze!" when the music stopped. She loved it even more when she won and everyone cheered for her.