Saturday, November 3, 2007

Halloween Fun

Happy Halloween! This year, Nick went as Link from the Legend of Zelda game and Ashlee went as Princess Aurora (also known as Sleeping Beauty.)

Look closely at the one where Ashlee is with some of her classmates (top right). You might have to click on it to enlarge it a bit. It seems that the "princess" has decided to give the poor girl in orange some bunny ears for the photo. I never thought a kindergartener could be that obnoxious! I had to put this one up because it makes me laugh! Ashlee looks like a football player posing for a team photo!

Trick or treating was a lot of fun. We went over to Janie and Andrea's neighborhood and Ashlee was pleasantly surprised to her see her old friend Josie from preschool whom she hasn't seen for at least a year, probably longer. All the kids had fun running from house to house and getting LOTS of candy.

There is a guy in our neighborhood who goes all out for Halloween. He decorates his entire property including parking a skeleton-driven hearse on the street. The creepiest part was the weird creature riding behind the skeleton. It seriously freaked me out! It was pretty hard to see in the dark so by the time you get up close enough to the window to see what it really is, you're face to face with it and that's when you wet your pants with fright! Ashlee was scared so I had to pretend that I was perfectly OK with it, even though I wanted to scream like a banshee! What is a banshee, anyway?? Hope you all had a great Halloween!

Thursday, November 1, 2007

The Big Day!

Ashlee came home from school at the beginning of October and announced that she had invited half of her Kindergarten class to her birthday party. I panicked a little bit, but then calmly reminded her that we were only having a family party at home this year because she had a big princess party with lots (ten, to be exact) of her friends last year. After seeing the disappointment on her face, I told her we should make a compromise--we would invite two friends and go to Chuck E. Cheese's. Thankfully, she was very happy with this arrangment.

On the day of her birthday, we ate out at Red Robin and the waiters sang her a happy birthday song and gave her free ice-cream. Good for both Ashlee and me! :)

At home, she opened more presents and finally got to blow the candles out on her My Little Pony cake.

I usually go all out making the cake, which is extremely time consuming. I wised-up this year by putting a Pony on the cake instead of trying to frost one with 3,000 different rainbow colors.

Queen for the day at Chuck E. Cheese and opening the number one present on her list -- Pinkie Pie's Balloon House! Thanks Grandma and Grandpa!

Enjoying the day with Erin and Samantha. Here Nick is showing only a very small fraction of the tens of thousands of tickets he won doing a variety of games. Good job Nick!
Happy Birthday Ash!

The Tooth Fairy Cometh!

This tiny little tooth that had been loose for weeks finally made its debut the day before Ashlee's 6th birthday. She was pretty darned excited. So excited that early the next morning she woke me up to tell me that the Tooth Fairy had come in the night and left a whole dollar under her pillow! I said,"Wow! That's SO exciting! And today is your birthday, too!" She paused to think about that for a second and said,"I get to open presents today AND the Tooth Fairly left me a dollar!"

The Tables Have Turned!

The other day, Ashlee and I went to Michael's to track down some pipe cleaners for Nick's Halloween party craft. While waiting in line to check out, there was a display with little tiny plastic characters that I think were to use to decorate scrapbook pages. Ashlee pointed to one and said,'Aww, Mom. Look! There's a little Frankie dog." I said, "Oh, that looks just like Frankie. How cute." Then she points to another one and says in all seriousness,"And look! There's you and Daddy!" I expected to see a girl and a boy or something like that. Instead, I found that she was pointing to one that had 2 monkeys on it! I protested,"But those are monkeys, Ashlee!" She started to giggle and said,"I know, you and Daddy are monkeys!" I said,"I can't believe you said that, you monkey!!" Then we both started laughing really hard. We laughed all through check out and all the way to the car.
She was using my own joke against me. Sometimes, when we're watching Animal Planet and a chimpanzee comes on the screen, I say, "Ashlee (or Nick), how did you get on TV?" I never thought that such a sweet, innocent-looking girl would actually use the same joke on me! What have I done?

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Autumn in Michigan

This fall, I've been reminded of my two favorite things about Michigan--good friends and an autumn trip to the apple orchards . . .

Nicole visited from Utah for a weekend and we had lunch at Casey's Tavern. So great to see her!

Ashlee at Wasem's Fruit Farms later that afternoon. They sell the yummiest pumpkin-batter donuts and crisp, juicy apples. Mmmm . . .

Janie and Andrea. It was pretty chilly, but this is as warm as they were going to dress. I had my winter coat on!

Halt! Thief! Abby was trying to lift Ashlee up so that they could see into the window where they were making donuts. It looked like they were up to no good!

Jake, Freya and Ashlee. Such cute little kiddies!

My Baby's a Cub Scout!

Yep, it's true. Nicky is a Cub Scout. More specifically he's a Wolf and is in Troop 100. So I've now entered the realm of weekly den meetings and monthly pack meetings, cute little uniforms, sew-on patches, flag ceremonies, and pinewood derbies. Scouting is a whole new world for me, but Nick loves it and is looking forward to his pack meeting this week where he will be presented with his Bobcat badge. Yay for Nick!

Walk to Cure Diabetes

I have so much catching up to do! Last month, we participated in the Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation's Walk to Cure Diabetes. Thank you, thank you, thank you to everyone who contributed to such a worthy cause. Team Freeman was able to raise almost $500! I was overwhelmed at the generosity so many of you showed. Also, a big thanks to Abbi, Ryan and Freya for joining Team Freeman and doing the walk with us. We had a lot of fun!

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Trippin' Utah Style

These cute little kiddies are "the cousins." They are so adorable! I had to make sure I got a photo of them all so I could go brag about them on my blog. First is Tyler (Sarah's little boy), then Jack and Abby (Ben's kiddies), and then Braden (Nat's little boy who is almost hidden by Simba the dog--I would have gotten a better shot of him except that he wouldn't sit still for more than half a second.) Abby is 4 years old, Tyler just turned 2, and Jack and Braden will both be 2 in just a couple of months. I'm jealous we live so far away from them all!

This was just after our tubing adventure down the Provo River. It was all great fun until I slammed into a concrete bridge support (also aptly known as "the Bridge of Doom") When I surfaced, I made the mistake of attempting to swim towards my runaway tube only to have been swept into shallow water where I kicked the rocks on the bottom a few times in a panic. No broken bones, but my bruises are still very sore. Sarah and Ben didn't even know I'd fallen off. Thanks, guys! Remind me not to hire you as river guides anytime soon! Don't you think Ben should use this shot to book some modeling jobs? :)

This was taken at Oktoberfest at Snowbird Ski Resort. Blonde is definitely Sarah's color! Ja! I would add something witty in German here, but no sprechen zie Deutsch.

Celebrating a late birthday with Tyler (look at his cute little face) and an early birthday for Sarah. We also made it up to Centerville for Chinese takeout with Dennis who was all alone because Anne was out of town. He introduced me to Neilsen's Frozen Custard. Why have I never been to this place before??? I feel like a traitor but I have to admit, it was the best ice-cream (or custard, I guess) I have ever had in my life. Twenty times better than Cold Stone hands down. It was so good I should have taken a photo of it!
Thanks so much to Sarah for requesting me as her birthday present. It was so fabulous to hang out without kids in tow for once and take a breather before heading back for a new school year.

Monday, September 10, 2007

Sunday Night Football

No matter how much I try to ignore it, football season is here. Though I can't stand to sit and watch college or professional ball on TV, there's something highly entertaining about my kids playing with their dad. It's adorable, it's funny, it's touching, but it's also extremely competitive! (I didn't teach the kids that, it's just a genetic thing I think . . . no one likes to lose, right?) It's a sign that fall is on its way and that's one of my favorite seasons to spend in Michigan. I can already smell the pumpkin doughnuts and apple cider. Let the games begin!


So, it turns out that my car accident was mostly a blessing after all. State Farm paid for this lovely upgrade to my poor old Honda. It's 3 years newer, has 60,000 less miles, leather seats, sunroof, and is an EX model (top of the line). My old car was an LX which is the middle model (say "middle model" ten times really fast!) Now if I can just get them to forget about the rate hike . . .

Thursday, September 6, 2007

Bye Bye Poor Honda

It's with a heavy heart that I said goodbye to my faithful Honda Accord last month. We almost made it to 200,000 miles. What you see here is the result of me rear-ending a Pathfinder with a U-haul bar on it. I had just changed lanes only to look up and see brake lights. The girl in the Pathfinder decided to suddenly stop for a light that had just turned yellow which gave my car a broken nose, black eye and smooshed insides. Her car was completely unscathed (of course) and I was the lucky winner of a "failure to stop within an assured distance" ticket and higher insurance rates. Yay. Happy Birthday to me.

Monday, August 13, 2007

My Ashlee

I love having a daughter. It has given me the chance to take a peek into what I might have been like growing up. Ashlee has such a great little personality and there are so many things I love about her. She's very sensitive to other people's feelings (and animals, too). The other day, I came downstairs and found her in the laundry room with Frankie. She had decided that he was bored and quickly provided him with entertainment and toys.

In this picture, she has put out her VideoNow player (in case Frankie wanted to watch a movie) and a rubber chicken and a toy helicopter, in case he'd like some toys to play with. It's all neatly placed on top of his dog chow bag for added convenience.

Here she has provided the poor bored puppy (who is supposed to be spending his time eating breakfast) with a very chic silver ribbon around his neck, a bouncy ball, and a tupperware lid full of an assortment of toys. One of the toys in the lid is a tiny little plastic armchair. Ashlee explained that Frankie needed some furniture to sit on.

She was very pleased with herself. And Frankie enjoyed the pampering (I think.) I love this sweet, adorable, kind, loving, dimpled little girl.