On a beautiful weekend in October we headed down to Cousin Danny's house in the hills of Brown County. He has started an annual chili cook-off. This was the 3rd year. Danny has a thing for "annual" things and family gatherings. I'm glad because the kids and I love to attend his shin-digs. We always have an awesome time because of all the cousins! Josiah goes into an altered state of mind being surrounded by so many boys. Lillian was interested in the cat most of the time. She would totally be the toddler on the news that wandered away from the family, slept with coyotes to stay warm, and then found a 1/2 mile away.
The kids playing pin the smile on the skeleton.
Josiah won! He talked about winning his dollar for days afterwards.
Danny knows the way to a kid's heart.
Lillian taking a few swings at the piñata.
Here's the real story of the weekend...
Grant has been totally into cooking shows lately. He says, "I know I could be a really good cook." Really? Prove it... Well once Grant found out it was a Chili cook off and there were prizes and pride at stake he was all in. Literally. Grant went to the grocery, worked on his chili, and then presented it with pride. Grant might've had a odd slight advantage. He had never made chili...ever. So he was able to create what he thought a good chili would have without knowing the standard ingredients.
Well, his creation was a hit and it was delicious!
Accepting his Grand Champion status.
I'm hoping next year there will be trophies and medals involved.
The Brown County Winery's red wine was very good though.
Grant being the humble guy he is needed to talk his winnings over.
grant: I wonder how much I won by
me: I heard Erin said you won by a landslide.
grant: like how many?
me: I think she said you had 12 more votes than second place.
grant: ... Maybe I should call her and find out what my total votes were.
All I have to say is he needs to be starting on his chili for next year, because beginner's luck only happens once. :)
I'm finally getting around to posting Halloween. I went to Jojo's school on Halloween. He was excited to get to wear his power ranger costume. The school had a huge parade. I thought it was just going to be his little class parading around the room. Nope, apparently this is a was a big deal. All the students and teachers were way dressed up and there were about 100 parents watching. Yikes!
I'm the "room mom" for his class. Man, does that sound old. I threw the party not knowing what in the heck to do with preschoolers. Just so you know, never in my life have I wanted to be a teacher, babysitter, or any occupation that involves children. It went fairly well. The next day I thanked one of the mom's (I grew up with her) for bring goody bags. She asked me "Who IS the room mom?" "Uh, well, that's me." She gave me a hug and said, "OH GIRL, I'm so sorry!" There's only room to go up from here;)
Jo's class dressed up.
Then came the evening. It was crazy to start. Neither of my kids wanted to wake up from their nap, eat dinner, or get dressed up. really? Then the phone calls started on when we were stopping by. Not the normal pre-trick or treating hype I remembered. oh well.
Cora wasn't too dressed up. She had a tutu, wings, and a jacket thing that didn't stay on. She was cute enough to begin with ;)
When we showed up at the Hellers, Todd told us Aunt Kandy wasn't there...
Of course, the kids loved the deer head. "Deer Heads" somehow make it into our daily conversation. It's a fixation that has lasted much longer that I would've ever imagined.
Aunt Kandy with the kiddos.
She loved being dressed up.
Stopped by June Bug's for some treats!
This power ranger costume was a real ordeal. I went to 6 stores looking for a certain one! Who knew Power Rangers were still in demand. I finally found this one (only one on shelf), but it wasn't the SAMURI Ranger. The clerk said, "oh, he wants to be a ninja? we have those over here." I looked at him like he's from Mars and asked, "Do you have kids...?" I knew I couldn't get it because I would be totally wrong and ruin his life for not buying the right costume. So we did the next best thing. Grant took him at 10am the next morning so that he could pick it out on his own.
Lillian asked "Do you have dogs?" at each and every house. Her "treat" was getting to see people's animals. Some people invited her in, some dogs ran up to her, and then we hit the jackpot. A lady brought out three of her dogs, let Lil pet each one, and the last one had a costume and pink hair! Lillian was in heaven on Halloween.
Our neighbor Jeanne knows how to throw a good party. She had a "masquerade" halloween party one evening. I made the mask because she told me we had to wear one. Of course when we showed up NO ONE had one on. Oh well, I thought they turned out cute and we had fun making them.
Grant brought home some great pumpkins for carving one night. I don't have pictures of the finished products or of Grants awesome Angry Birds pumpkin that last a day before the front caved in :(
One afternoon we braved(actually didn't realize until we were there) the madness of fall break and headed down to the CM for the Haunted house. Christine used to take cousin Mark and I each year when I was little so it was fun to see her take my kids! Grammy and Daddy were also there. We had a good time.