Friday, November 25, 2011


This is my favorite picture from Thanksgiving this year. It reminds me that this was a great year because of the McKids. They are all growing up so fast and Jessie is already in college, but they are so much fun together and such good kids. They are smart and witty and entertaining and kind. And we're still all quoting David's "I'll take some, coach, if it's all the same to you", though none of us has his comic timing.
It was also a great year because of the food and all the family we had to help prepare it. This was the first year Rob and I got to host for the McFarland family. We had everyone but the Beans, who stayed up in Idaho. With all the other cooks, I actually did a lot less than last year, and the food was spectacular. Maddie and Rob get a special mention as our pie specialists. They have decided to take that on and have been practicing whenever they find fruit for a filling. There was a smashing lemon meringue along with the more typical pumpkin, apple, chocolate and mincemeat (OK, not typical, but traditional), and they made little Mr. Kipling-style tarts in muffin tins.
Jessie and the olives
The kids' table. Joss is just a blur next to Adam, who had split his eyebrow and gotten stitches. Sebi and Hannah sit in the foreground.
And the tryptophan-induced nap.
We eventually got up and wobbled about the neighborhood in the evening. It was a good time all around!

Thursday, November 17, 2011


My sister-in-law Betsy just her first baby, a boy named Eli. I started this sweater while she was in labor and finished it when he was a week old. Then I decided it needed a hat, so that took a couple more days . . .
And these are for two cute brothers, Declan and Malcolm, sons of friends of ours. They wore them to their sister's baptism and they looked so cute, but I realized I could have done better sizing down the 3 month old size. And TJ will notice that I took her suggestion on the hem at the bottom!

Thursday, November 03, 2011

Three More Reasons I Don't Homeschool

Joss "reading" his halloween card: "Which kind of candy is your favorite, and DAMMMNATION, and which kind of candy is your favorite, and DAMMMNATION, and which kind of candy is your favorite, and DAMMNATION (repeat another 4-5 times), in the name of Jesus Christ, amen."

Will and I had a very confusing conversation until figured out that he thought "flamboyant" meant both buoyant and flammable. Pretty understandable, but he kept talking about these flamboyant bombs floating around at sea and I just couldn't catch the vision.

Joss had his Halloween party at preschool and came home with a pumpkinload of goodies. He pulled out a little rubbery skeleton and said "Mama, do you think skeletons are spooky?" I, sensing the opportunity for a little teaching, said "No, I think skeletons are great! I have a skeleton and you have a skeleton and everybody has a skeleton inside of them to help them stand up and move around. Isn't that good?"
Joss turned around, pulled down his pants, mooned me and said "Can you see it in there?"

Tuesday, November 01, 2011

Halloween 2011

This year when we got home, we found that for the first time, we were successfully growing pumpkins. And that there were exactly four. By Halloween, they were all orange and we harvested them and carved them, lit them and stuck them on the front porch.
They were just as slimy as ever.
Will decided that he wanted to be a BYU quid ditch player for Halloween. We had gone to D.I. (local thrift shop) and let the kids go wild finding things for their costumes a week or so before, but by the evening of the 30th, Will still just had a navy bathrobe. Rob made his awesome Firebolt broomstick with an old broom and clippings from our fruit trees. I downloaded a new varsity font, printed everything onto iron-on paper, ironed it onto white fabric and then sewed it onto the robe.
[I'm messing around with all of the cool new effects on Picasa. This one is neon and is one of Will's favorites.] He was happy with the results. Phew!
Launching himself into the game.
Mercifully Maddie found a dress and only required a shopping trip to finish off her costume.
Here she's a princess and I've made her photo 60's style.
Sebastian decided he wanted to be a punk rocker after Mark put the song "Punk Rock Girl" onto a CD for Will. [OK, I'm really liking the pencil sketch! I was going to start drawing again, but why? This is great!]
We found a denim jacket, the guitar and the boots at D.I. Sebastian was not into the patent leather high boots, but his parents both told him that was exactly what he needed. Then we downloaded album art from punk bands and a british flag and ironed and sewed those on too.
The whole crew.
These two decided to take Joss out trick-or-treating.
Sebastian had to be talked into going out at all. He had hated the costume at school and wet down his stiff red hair in the morning. Such a shame because he looked great! Finally we called up and arranged a trick-or-treat date with Tomas and Curtis. And then he was fine with it. Apparently there are more punk conversant people up north of us.
Joss was a "scary fledermaus" and since that is one of only two German words that he says, we never did tell him what he was in English. He eventually figured it out since everyone else called him a bat. He loved this costume and even at Christmas when his siblings went to find costumes for the nativity play, he wanted to be the scary bat. I'll leave you to decide where the bat comes into the story of the first Christmas . . .
And here is a closeup of some of the bands we turned into patches and put on Sebi's jacket. His brother and sister have both worn it to school since Halloween, and Maddie claims she wants to be a punk rocker next year, so perhaps the investment of time will be worth it.