Friday, November 28, 2008

Happy Thanksgiving!

We had a wonderful Thanksgiving meal yesterday! Mom and Dad Judisch are here for the rest of the week celebrating with us. We are very thankful for that!
Here are a few snapshots of our day...
The kids all enjoyed basting the turkey every 30 minutes!
Some of the spread...
Our feast consisted of:
Oven roasted turkey
Brown sugar glazed ham
Sweet potato casserole
Green Bean casserole
Mashed potatoes
White bread sage dressing with cranberries and pecans
Yeast rolls
Jellied cranberries
Thanksgiving blend coffee
Apple crisp
Pumpkin Pie Cheesecake
(Honestly, we haven't even gotten to the dessert yet! We are planning on that tonight!)

Madeline claimed one of the turkey legs after eating some ham exclaiming "Well, I 've eaten my pig, now I need to eat my bird!"....I think we have been in Oklahoma a little too long!!!!!

We hope you all had a wonderful meal and time with friends and family as we celebrate all that we here in America have to be thankful for!

Monday, November 10, 2008

The Dalmatian Party

Last year, Madeline wanted a "Little Mermaid-under-the-sea" party...the very next day, she told me, "Mom, next year I want a Dalmatian party!" I thought this might fizzle out over the year, but OH NO, she still very definitely wanted a Dalmatian party...Of course, there is NO Dalmatian themed party paraphernalia out there, so this one stretched my creative limits to the max, and this is what I came up with...

We decorated the house with black and white balloons and red streamers. Madeline and Evelyn helped me use sharpie markers on some of the white balloons to give them "spots".

We moved some furniture around, brought in the folding tables and set up craft stations. The first was called "Dalmatian Station". Each kid got to choose a spotted t-shirt to wear - and keep. (I picked up 3 pks of boys white under-shirts, 5 for $5, and the girls helped me paint black spots on all of them.) Then, they got to choose some ears (head bands with felt ears hot-glued to them). Next, they got to have their nose painted black with face paint. Finally, they made themselves collars using ribbons, scrap booking tags and jingle bells. I encouraged them to write their 'puppy' name on the tags. We had Penny, Boxer, Lucky, Broser, Pepper, and others I can't remember. They were so creative!

Dalmatian Station

Madeline AKA "Lucky"

The next station was "Make a Doggie-Bag". I picked up a pack of white lunch bags and set out markers for the puppies to decorate the bags. Then they got to choose from a variety of treats to fill their bags with. We had baggies of puppy chow (chex cereal coated in melted peanut butter, chocolate, and powdered sugar), dog bones (rice crispy treats cut out with a bone cookie cutter), and lolli-pups (hand made chocolate lollipops in the shape of paws). Madeline and Evelyn helped me make all the treats for this one and we had a lot of fun in the kitchen.

Make a Doggie-Bag

The last station was "Paint-a-Pup". I picked up some cute wooden dog cut-outs from hobby-lobby and everyone got to paint one to take home.


We had a really good turn out for the party (13 total), so it was good to have several stations the kids could rotate to. It was also helpful to have them busy while I worked on lunch! I served mini-hamburgers, carrot sticks, celery sticks, apple slices, and potato chips. (No pictures of lunch, we were too busy eating!)

It was a beautiful day, so the kids ate outside and played in the backyard for a bit while the adults cleaned up and had a chance to regroup!

This is Ambrose, he is 2...he refused to wear "ears" because then he would have to take off his grandfather's hat, and that was NOT going to happen...isn't he too cute!

Apparently, puppies like to jump on trampolines...

...and climb trees.

Evelyn was "Pepper" and Christina was "Penny".

Here is the youngest little puppy at the party who just woke up from her nap...
...and then realized there was a camera pointed at her! (Again...her hair really isn't red...although it would be beautiful if it was...the light often makes it look that way!)

After a while we brought in the "litter" to play "pin the tail on the Dalmatian". The prize was a tin in the shape of a dog bone filled with white chocolate covered Oreos!

Here is Evelyn looking at her handiwork after the blind fold came off.

Aidan played too, but blind folds and spinning were not going to happen for him, so we didn't really count his attempt.

This is Robert...he was a great contender, very serious about the game. He came in second place.
Lydia ended up winning, unfortunately I did not snap a picture of her with the prize, but needless to say, she was thrilled!
We moved onto cake next. I went simple on this one, chocolate cake, white icing, chocolate disks for spots, with a red ribbon and tag wrapped around it.
Happy Birthday!

We ended the party with gift opening.
Madeline got some great loot! Lots of craft kits and books, a few toys and clothing! She had a blast! So far, she has not decided on a theme for next year, but Evelyn said she wants a dinosaur party! AHHHHHHHH!!!!!!!!!!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Happy Birthday Madeline!

Yesterday we celebrated our sweet Madeline's 8th birthday! We had a waffle breakfast, during which we let her open a few of her gifts. Then we let her choose a lunch destination after church...she chose Chili's and got their Kraft macaroni and cheese with mandarin oranges. I know I could have made that for her for much less, but it was what she wanted, so we indulged. We will be having a 'friend' party on Saturday, so there will be more pictures to come.
Madeline is our sweetheart. Always thinking of others before herself, she makes a great big sister to our crew. She loves animals, crafts, and the color pink. She made us parents and made our parents grand-parents. We are so very blessed to have this little girl who is still in that sweet naive state that we too quickly grow out of. I hope she stays there for at least one more year. We love you bunches Madeline Lea!

Saturday, November 1, 2008

Happy All Saints Day! AKA Halloween!

So, every year on this day we have had a variety of activities to do. We have done dinners, parties, and festivals, but this year, we went trick-or-treating for the very first time. We all met with others at our friend Denise's house for a spaghetti dinner. Then, we separated the kids into groups - older and younger - and went off to the neighborhood to beg for candy. Of course the kids had a blast, and came home with pumpkin pails full of candy that probably won't last them through the week!
Here are a few pictures of our evening.

Our jack-o-lantern. (His eyes had pupils, but they seemed to dissapear by the end of the night!?)

The girls dressed up as kitty cats. They named themselves "jingle bell".

This is the group of "younger kids" minus one who was chasing a cat. Aidan, dressed up as "Dash" from the Incredibles. It happens to be his favorite t-shirt, so we could easily convince him to "dress-up".

Neal and I got in the spirit too! I dressed as an angel and Neal dressed as a scholar wearing his PhD regalia. He would not let me take a picture of him however, so you have to use your imagination.

And our little Lillian went as a flower - thanks to Aunt Janelle for the GORGEOUS hat she knitted!