We visited with our friends Aaron & Cynthia and their kids at their cottage on Saturday (all be it a little later then we planned, first camping of the season is always rough and takes forever to pack for).
Let's just say it's never a good sign when your GPS shows you driving through trees. Thank goodness Aaron was waiting for us out on the road and led us the last little bit to their place. I was staring to get worried that we had taken a wrong turn somewhere.
That afternoon we drove over to my parents campsite (my sister and her family were also there) for an afternoon of swimming and later for dinner. It was a little crazy with seven kids under the age of five but it was still fun to see everyone.
So maybe it wasn't my best idea to give two small boys cardboard lightsabers and let them fight it out in the garage having Star Wars music blaring in the background… But it did keep them occupied for half an hour on a Saturday. And it certainly hasn't been the worst idea I've ever had.
Downsizing yet another box of stuff I came across some old photos. Most were doubles or have been scanned but a few I can't remember seeing in decades or at all. As one who has always enjoyed taking photos to find some new ones was a real treat.
You youngsters out there will be hard pressed to remember a time when Lego didn't come in themed sets with all the right pieces, but in my youth you had to make due with what you had and we liked it that way. If that meant Autobot City had to be multi-coloured so be it. Or building a Death Star Corba Terror Dome snake creature thingy meant you had to plan ahead to make sure you had enough black blocks to complete it, that's what you did.
Being the photographer usually means that it's rare to see one's self in a photo. But that makes it all that more meaningful when you do get one. Even if you're behind the crowd or looking a little dorky on your parent's lawn in the 1980's.
The boys had their light weight Halloween costumes of Dash from the Incredibles and pit crew for Lighting McQueen for daycare which they really enjoyed. But lets face it, that's just the warm-up for the main event later that night.
Being off for paternity leave left me able to pick them up early and see all their little friends dressed up, they were all so excited. I also caught the end of a petite spectacle that was put on at the daycare.
As per tradition of the past few years my parents came over to see the kids (I have to say kids now, not boys. Having a third kid is really starting to be work). My dad comes out with us and my mom helps hands out the candy, which was really helpful this year as Donna might be feeding AR and can't exactly make it to the door.
As us men went off to forage for much needed supplies (candy) we left the women folk to tend to the children (I'm so joking about this).
We cast our net wider this year and doubled our normal route. Taking turns of pulling the wagon (but my dad did most of that. Thanks dad).
I've perviously made mention of the lengths some people in my neighbourhood go to decorate their homes for Halloween, but seeing is believeing. These people certainly have some imagination and time. One of the places had one cropse face down with a knife in it's back and a gallows with another hanging. Yikes!
Now I have to apologise to Donna. Running up to Halloween she was worried we'd run out of candy. I assured her not to worry and we'd be fine with the 80 bags she made. But still she bought some more just to make sure we didn't run out. I'm sorry honey you were right.
A little after we got home trick or treating and my parents left we got nailed by a pack of teenagers that nearly cleaned us out. I quickly turned off the lights and moved the pumpkins to the back balcony before the next batch could descend upon us. Today Donna estimates we got 120-130 kids show up. Yikes! That's alot of kids.
This year the boys painted their own little pumpkins and Daddy couldn't help get in on the fun. ET did a great face on his and was done in five minutes and Carts took at least thirty minutes plus painting his.
I guess he wanted to make sure he painted the whole thing. ET said my Nightmare Before Christmas one was cool, but I had to explain to him that daddy cheated and used the internet and his was much better because he thought it up himself.
Like pastyears, we carved some pumpkins. And by we I mean Donna empty's them, I carve them and the boys check out how I'm doing during commercials. Which was okay, because I had a big headache and they were going to cause my head to implode. Last year we invested in a carving set that came with stencils that are really make the job faster and easier.
The weekend before the big event, we had a boys only day at LaRonde and let Donna rest and relax.
Since we had the season pass we went one last time for the year for Halloween. Like last year, they had the place decked out in a Halloween theme… pumpkins, spiders, and people dressed up as vampires and rats walking around the park. There was even some kids already in their Halloween costumes.
I was going to buy some popcorn for us to snack on, but it was only being sold in the reusable bucket container for $10 (they must have hundreds left from the 2008 season) and it was way too much for the boys to eat late in the day. So we got beaver tails instead. In retrospect maybe not the best thing to give little kids with all that sugar, but certainly less volume than the bucket of popcorn and I didn't want them to be stuffed for dinner. I split one between the boys and they did eat most of it, but ET was disappointed he got a plain one and not the chocolate. They a got a plain one mainly do to my unwillingness to clean up all the chocolate they would invariably smear all over themselves… especially Carts.
We played some air hockey at the arcade (see the video) and the boys really liked that. Though Carts did get frustrated that he couldn't hit the puck very often. Did wish they had some more kid friendly games; I just don't think shooting zombies is appropriate for kids four and under. Call me crazy.
It might have been a little cold, but the sun was out and we had a real enjoyable day. Plus it was a great confidence booster to my dad skills.