Saturday, October 31, 2009

We had a bug-ish Halloween :)

Our festivities started Thursday evening. We went to the church to decorate for the ward party the following evening.
This photo brought big laughs!The tables at the church were all being decorated by different people.
They all looked great and was a fun idea.
Here are some of my favorites, which looked better in person than these photos.

KG decorated his hallway and rooms but needed to come back Friday morning because three hours just wasn't enough time! Oy.

Flower got to wear her costume to preschool on Friday morning! Wow I love this photo! Well done KG...since I was home snuggled in bed. He's so nice to me.
She's so puuurty!
Friday night we went to our ward Halloween party.
The girls participated in a children costume parade.
Flower's little friend Tiana as Little Mermaid!
I took some photos throughout the night of my favorite costumes.
Cutest little bee ever!
(Sorry Megan :) Ok fine B and River tie for cutest little bees!)
Some sort of something or other on the stage. ;)
I somehow failed to take photos of the best part of the night...the Thriller dance performed by several members of the ward. Wow. So funny! Loved it!
KG decorated his hallway and two rooms. By far the best of the evening. He's good at what he does! I can't believe I forgot to get photos of the rooms!

We all dressed as bugs this year. Flower wanted to be a pretty little butterfly so we decided to oblige. KG was the prettiest little Lady bug I've ever seen! ;) River and I were bees. I was supposed to be a spider but 30 minutes before we were set to leave, I had some costume malfunctions which caused a 'slight' emotional breakdown and that lead me to leave the house without the costume that KG had worked hard on. :( We decided to skip out on my sister's work thing and go buy me a costume. Found the only bug costume in the shop...crisis averted! Whew.
KG once again won best male costume. :)

Saturday we started the night by going to Kris' neighborhood, which we've made a tradition since adding children to our mix. I've adopted this neighborhood since we don't have one.
Posing for the beginnings of their Trick-or-Treating!
Kris joined us for this portion of our evening.
One house down many more to go! River had it all figured out and was reaching right in the candy bowls for her share. She kept wanting to go in each house too. :)
After about 45 minutes we were ready to hit Harrison Boulevard. I have wanted to Trick-or-Treat here for years and nothing was getting in the way this year!

We went several blocks until we came to the yard that was playing the Thriller movie on a big screen throughout the night.
Can you see Micheal eating his popcorn on the screen?

Every time the zombies came out to dance in the movie, a national dance team danced on a stage in front of the screen. Very cool. The boy by the screen is one of the dancers.
It was hard to see with such a crowd. We couldn't get any closer than the island in the middle of the road. Lynnette ended up going later and was able to get up close so I stole this photo from her so you could see how amazing their make-up and costumes were done.
After the movie and dance show we then walked on the other side of the road the several blocks back to our car, trick-or-treating along the way.
Flower was completely mesmerized by these fire jugglers. She would have stood there all night if we didn't have other things to do. Very, very cool!

We loved all the decorations we came across.

At 8:00 we went out to Meridian to my parents house. It has been our tradition for years to end at their house. They always have doughnuts, mom's sugar cookies, Ritz with squirt cheese, chili cheese dip and corn chips , and Apple Cider. Yum! We also go trick-or-treating around their neighborhood with all the cousins. The big cousins ran ahead this year leaving KG and I to enjoy River and Lorelai with Ryan and Amanda. And when we got back we found out the two little ones lasted longer than the big kids! Yay! My aunt Carolyn and Grandma have joined us for the last couple of years as well. We like that.
Lorelai with Great Grandma.
Lorelai's biggest ROAR!
That's my dad in back. :) He loves to try and scare the kids.
All the cousins, plus two friends(the two cute kids in glasses) at the party.
As you can see, River was done by this time. :)
Finally we finished out the night by going to KG's parents. More candy and fun for the girls! We left there at 11:00. The girls had a long day and were out for the count before their heads hit the pillows.

Flower and I couldn't wait to get home from church and dump all the candy from the girls bag on the floor and check out the loot. Prior to that we hadn't eaten any candy yet! That's just wrong! Between both the girls there was about 10 pounds of candy! Awesome.
We each got a small black Halloween bowl and picked out our favorites that no one else could touch. I was surprised at what Flower's favorites were this year. She took out all the plain Hershery bars and the tootsies rolls! Perfect for me because those are among my least favorite. I took the Reese's Sticks, Skittles and Crunch Bars. KG got the Whoppers, Junior Mints, and Peanut M&M's. The rest went into a big bowl as a free for all. And all Snickers went into the freezer. :)
Her personal stash.
I think this was my favorite Halloween so far. We kept it simple by just doing what our little family wanted to do. It was very low key and no stress! We got to do everything we wanted and the girls were total troopers. And the weather was perfect. Not too cold, no rain, just nice and pleasant the whole night. Can hardly wait till next year. We already have our costumes planned! :)

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Humanitarian Award.

Thursday morning we left bright and early, 8:30 to be exact, bound for Provo, Utah. We were going in support of Amanda (from China) receiving a humanitarian service award from BYU for her efforts in China. We are so proud of her and so happy she's finally being recognized. She is such an incredible example for Flower.
We made a couple of stops along the way but made pretty good time. We landed in time for lunch. We went to the much talked about Cafe Rio. I didn't like it. I'm not sure what the big deal is but it was not good. Worst beans I've ever had and the chicken tasted funky. Anyway, I made KG go through the Skippers drive-thru so I could eat something in the car. I miss having Skippers in Boise. :( Anyway, we went all the way to Utah without any idea of where we'd stay. After lunch we drove around to find a place. We checked Priceline, put in an amount and bam, awesome price for a new hotel in the perfect location! Score.
We fell in love with the room.
Pretty bed made in crisp white, accented with shades of mint green and turquoise.
A fabulous modern window seat that covered the unsightly air conditioner.
Obviously the girls thought it was neat.
First place they hung out.
And jumped off.
They had these super cool reading lights attached to the beds!
A neat little desk by the sofa but could be seen from the bed by opening the handy little window.
Flower was quick to test the bounciness of the beds.

We give it two thumbs up.
They had a docking station for iPhones/iPods. How cool is that?
Very cool since I forgot my charger. Super score!

Cool lighting.

Totally rad sofa and pillows.

Have I ever mentioned how much I love River's neck? Cause I do. She has a very thin, defined neck for a baby and I think it's so pretty. The following photo, as well as one I note later, are examples of what I mean.
Blow drying a bald head is hard work!
River made herself right at home.
Really liked this mirror. The light was behind that ring. Sweet!

The doors all had this sort of frosted glass. Pretty darn creepy when River put her hands on it. Looks a little alien-esce.

In no time at all it was time to leave. That provided some good running of the hallways.

We attempted to find Noodles and Company. We thought we could walk.
We were way off track and very confused. But my people looked cute in the cross walk!
Beautiful mountain outside our hotel room.
We finally drove to our destination and enjoyed time with Amanda while meeting people that have volunteered at Starfish.
The girl in the photo volunteered at Starfish shortly after we picked up Flower.
Her brother is the one on the right and he was volunteering while we were there getting Flower. We went out to eat with him and went to church. It was really neat to see him again.She volunteered at Starfish with the girl above.This couple came to meet Amanda for the first time. Their daughter is in China and is going to volunteer at Starfish. So cool.
There were several people that have followed Flower from the very beginnings of Starfish and it was so good to meet them in person, rather than just comments on our blog.

It was nice visiting but this was our queue to leave. :) We were all pretty warn out. We made a quick stop at Coney's Custard for some cold treats on our way back to the hotel. It was yummy.
Friday morning we slept until 8:30 and then went to the hotel's free breakfast. This wasn't just a continental breakfast but a full fledged breakfast that was actually good.
After returning back to our room KG and River went back to sleep, Flower laid in the dark, and I got to enjoy a nice bath while reading a People magazine.
At noon we checked out and headed on over to BYU. The event was held at the Hinckley Center. Very handsome building and great views. The meal we were served was not so great. But the reason for being there was well worth the drive.
This lady, Caiping Sun, volunteered at Starfish when Flower was there.
She was so happy to see the little girl Flower has become.
Here they are now...
...and in 2005.

It was very special for us to see Amanda being awarded for her efforts. She graciously excepted her award, with Flower by her side, and then gave a lovely speech that even made us emotional. We are just so grateful for her!

River was sound asleep through most of it which was a big relief.
Here are some photos of the program.

After the awards ceremony people flocked around Amanda to get as much info as they could. It was very cool to see so many people interested and wanting to meet her.
We finally pulled her away for some photos of those that came to support her.

I adore this photo. It shows Flower's sass and River's admiration for her!
(please note River's neck again :))
While Amanda was being interviewed, and we were waiting to be interviewed(yes you read that right, I had to be interviewed.on camera.with a microphone pinned to my shirt. not fun. But if it will benefit Amanda and the babies, it's worth it.) we went outside to enjoy the sunny weather and the views.
The girls immediately went to the grass and started hugging without any prompting from us!
I loved it.
These might be two of my favorite photos of them together.

They ran around and played. It was really nice.

Then Flower had to use the bathroom so River just wandered and wandered without a care in the world.
She'd wave as she passed by.

I'm so in love with their tights. Flower wore both pair last winter and I'm so happy to get them out for the cold weather again.

After the interviews and good-byes, we hit the road. On our way out of Provo we stopped at this cupcake shop. I've heard from several folks about the goodness of this place. Not bad.Not bad. My favorite was the strawberry shortcake and cookies and cream.
Flower and River were given BYU bags which held a t-shirt and pom-poms. River was tormented by her sister with the pom-poms on the way home.
We stopped off at Maddox for supper.
This is how the girls were when we finally rolled into Boise at 11:30 pm. Poor things.
It was a quick trip but so worth it. And it somehow felt like we were gone forever. It was also awesome to still come home and have the weekend to enjoy. :) And a busy weekend it was.

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