Monday, October 31, 2016


I think it's fair to say that of all the holidays, Halloween is the one we are all over-the-moon about celebrating. Especially at "Nightmare on 131st Place."
When the Guzzos moved in, they brought along their love of Halloween. And so our cul de sac collectively decided that, while the east 131st Place turned into "Christmas Place" every December, our little western cul de sac would become "Halloween Place" - "Nightmare on 131st Place."
And this year, Mark and the kids surprised me with this super tall inflatable, who just MADE the whole yard, along with our pumpkin carriage that we've had for several years. Aren't they fun?!
 Bob, Joe and I-forget-the-other-name, scurrying up the house.
 Our graveyard beneath the old tree.
I've always loved this sign. And I've always loved witches. Maybe it's the family history in the Salem Witch trials.
Pumpkin man.
Nights are when our cul de sac came to life!
 The Barteks.
 The Beissers.
 The Guzzos. This purple guy was new this year and added an eerie touch!
 One of our firepit and chili hangouts with all the neighbors gathered in lawn chairs.
Boy do we ever love our neighbors!

We made our annual trip to the pumpkin patch with the plane crash. The kids think this is so mysterious.

 Our neighborhood puts on an awesome Halloween parade along the trail that ends in the park.
The grown-ups donned tees. Because 131st Place is the hood life.
Pumpkin carving.

It's so sad that this is the last year Lorelei has school parties! She couldn't find her bat girl mask so I bought a new one that morning and surprised her!
 The girls in L's class.
And at last, Halloween night! (Don't you just love Mark's Mama Bear robe and pajamas in the background? Ha!)
 Happy Halloween!

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

The Kids' Very Own Baking Club

The kids had a scrumptiously creative idea (after watching The Great British Bake-Off and Kids Bake-Off Challenge on TV) to create their own Baking Club. At slumber parties the girls would pore over recipes and plan the whole club, writing out their ideas in binders that they made just for this. The boys pitched in with ideas, too. So I blocked off a few dates on the calendar, sent out invitations, and asked the kids what ingredients they needed. They did all the rest!
Soon, word traveled around the neighborhood and school about this innovative club, and more and more kids gathered in our dining room and kitchen, mixing ingredients for contests with blindfolds (Mark and I were usually the judges). I'm so proud of their creativity and initiative! What a hit!