Longest Halloween Celebration

Posted By Bonnie Comments Off on Longest Halloween Celebration

    Stuart suggested that this is the longest Halloween anticipation and celebration we ever had and the credit all goes to our little Connor.  It all started after we attended the Mickey’s Halloween Party at Disneyland back in September, Connor has been talking about this holiday almost non-stop.  He learns how to drawimage pumpkins, scarecrows, witches, bats, skeletons and ghosts, and writes the words too.  He received lots of practice as he spent most of the time drawing while Logan played at his soccer games.  Connor has also been bringing home artworks from school and he enjoys decorating the house with many of his work.  He has started to count down to the big day since 5 days ago, and he reminds us each day how many more days to come.  He is now so excited for the festivities tomorrow.  Even when we were reading tonight, twice he suddenly burst out “I am so excited!”  Let’s hope tomorrow that the rain won’t be too heavy.


Pumpkin Carving

Posted By Bonnie Comments Off on Pumpkin Carving

 image    I had a brunch to celebrate Julie’s birthday this morning.  I picked up Kathy to carpool to Lisa’s Tea Treasure and met up with Robyn, Theresa, Julie and Thuy there for a tea party.  We enjoyed a nice conversation and a good lunch with delicious tea.  We also had an opportunity to carry the newborn Taylor; she was very good and it was nice to hold a napping baby again.  When I returned home, Connor was still sleeping and Logan just started playing the PC game.  I got dinner preparation started, then Connor woke up and came down to see me with a big smile.    

      Connor has been asking to go to a pumpkin patch lately, but our initial plan to go to one yesterday morning was cancelled due to the rain.  This afternoon we were sort of too lazy to go, so I suggested carving the two other pumpkins we had purchased and Connor was thrilled.  He helped me set up in the backyard, then just watched me get started with the carving.  Connor wanted to help, so I asked him to separate the seeds from the pulp to make pumpkin seeds to eat.  He complained of sliminess but managed to get a small portion done.  I asked Logan to help out too, but he was not interested and started shooting baskets instead.  Stuart used this opportunity to cut down the lemon tree that we did not want anymore.  He was happy to use his new chainsaw and got the job done quickly.  Later Connor got tired of helping me and asked if he could go play for awhile.  Since both Stuart and I were busy, the boys seemed more independent, playing on their own.  They played basketball for a little bit, then spent a long time playing with some sticks.  Lastly they moved on to chalks and drew all over the backyard.

    At the end, jobs accomplished!  Our two pumpkins were carved and displayed in the front porch with the two painted ones done by the boys.  The lemon tree is now gone, but we still need to call for someone to remove the stump.  Connor is now counting down to Halloween!  At bedtime, he told me that when he wakes up in the morning, it will be four more days before Halloween.  And the next day, it will be three, and so on.  When he got to zero, he screamed with joy that it will be Halloween.


Pumpkin Bust

Posted By Bonnie Comments Off on Pumpkin Bust

    Logan’s school had an annual Halloween event on Friday and we all looked forward to it.  Logan also received a T-shirt for the event that he enjoyed wearing throughout the day.  I tried to get home from work as early as I could, and made it right after Stuart picked up the boys.  We walked over to the school and the event was in full swing.  We looked around all the offerings, then the boys wanted to have dinner first.  imageWe bought some pizza for the boys and hotdogs from food truck for ourselves.  After we ate, we spent more time looking around.  We checked out the book sale, and we got only one book.  We watched the karaoke for a little bit, then Connor got startled by a troop of Star Wars characters entering the area.  Their costumes were awesome and they walked around the entire evening to take pictures with families.  Connor preferred looking at the three professionally dressed princesses who also strolled around.  The boys wanted to decorate pumpkins so we headed over to the patch.  They had fun dressing up the pumpkins with stickers that we ended up spending quite a long time there under the tent.  Logan finished up first so he walked around with Stuart while Connor continued quietly working on his pumpkin until he was happy with it. 

     After we put the pumpkins aside, Connor and I went to try the “cake walk”.  He ran into one of his classmates and they both giggled waiting for the game to start.  When the music ended, my letter was called!  I jumped and cheered, and Connor was very excited with me.  We went over to the prize table and chose a chocolate mousse cake as our reward.  Logan and Stuart witnessed our big win too.  Later, Logan convinced me to stand in line at a coin toss stand as he wanted a stuffed animal.  Logan was so excited while he waited and even called out which stuffed animal he would like to get, so I had to prepare him that he might not actually win the big prizes.  When it was Logan’s turn, he made some good tosses, but unfortunately he missed the cups; however he was not too sad.  Then it was Connor’s turn and one of his coins made a cup.  He immediately asked for the bear that Logan wanted; I asked him the reason he picked that one and his reply was “Because Logan wants it”.  He ran over to hand it to Logan and Logan was ecstatic.  What a nice brother Connor is!

   We walked around the playground some more.  Connor was drawn to the kids singing karaoke.  He almost wanted to join in to dance but he made it up to the far corner of the stage only.  Logan was checking out the sign up sheets for “teacher time”, and he was interested to have a movie and snacks with his teacher, so we let him buy a slot.  By then, it was close to 8pm; we gathered all of our winnings and pumpkins and about to walk home.  Then we remembered the remaining tickets that we had, so we used them up to buy little Halloween toys at the toy table.  We all were big winners at this school event and we had a great time.


Happy Anniversary!

Posted By Bonnie Comments Off on Happy Anniversary!

   image Happy 9th Anniversary to us!  We took the day off together today to celebrate.  After dropping off the kids at school and checking out some plants at a local nursery, we headed over to our tee time.  We chose an executive 18 hour course that we used to play at, but it has been years since we had been there.  We were paired up with two retired gentlemen for the game and we had a great time playing.  The course was beautiful and we even had two deer joining us at a couple of the holes.  Both Stuart and I lost a few balls and had some trouble at a few holes, but overall we did fine.  I am happy with my overall improvement in golf even though we don’t play as much these days.  We both did well at Hole 16; Stuart got a birdie and I got a par.  With the lack of exercise lately, walking the 18 holes was definitely a workout for us.  Four hours later when we finished the game, we were exhausted.  We had a very late lunch, then bought some grocery before driving home.  We were able to attempt a short nap before picking up the boys for Logan’s soccer practice.  The day went by fast, but we had a good time.


Art Vistas Volunteering

Posted By Bonnie Comments Off on Art Vistas Volunteering

    My first volunteering at Logan’s class finally happened on Monday; it was the first of six lessons for the year.  Logan was aware that I would volunteer in his class one day but did not show too much interest in it.  On Sunday when I told him that I would be there on Monday, his eyes got so large and he was beaming.  He actually said “I will be so excited that I will jump out of my chair”.  Wow! I never expected that kind of reaction from him and was happy to see that.

    On Monday when I arrived at school during their lunchtime to gather my materials/supplies, I passed by the outdoor eating area with a cart.  I scanned for Logan and found him eating and talking with two boys.  As soon as he noticed me, he looked surprised initially then changed into a goofy big smile.  As I walked past them, I turned back and made funny face at him a couple of times.  Logan was beaming and pretending to duck down.  He had the facial expression like “I can’t believe my mommy is here”.

   I set up quickly in the empty classroom, then the teacher came back from her lunch and my three recruited parent helpers arrived as well.  Just when I finished filling in the parents with the art project, we heard a three-bell rang.  It turned out that the rain started and the kids’ lunch got shorten by 10 minutes.  The teacher ran outside  right away and shortly after the whole class returned.  Logan was one of the four kids who carried in two big bins full of lunch boxes.  With the chaos of rain, the class calmed down quickly and back in their seats.  So the lesson began.  I introduced myself and the helper parents, and then started talking to the children with the materials I was given.  The lessons this year cover the different elements of art and this first lesson was about lines.  I shared three copies of famous paintings and utilized them to discuss different kinds of lines.  I tried to be interactive with the kids and asked them questions.  I was surprised with the overwhelming number of hands being raised.  I tried to go around the room and called on different kids.  Logan raised his hands too; I much later called on him as well.  His first question was asking when we could start our painting project, but the second question was sort of relevant to what I was talking about, so I used that to show the class another kind of lines.  All the kids had been great and attentive throughout the talking.  After the discussion, I demoed how to make the “Styrofoam printing” that we were doing.  Then their hands-on part began which was a bit more hectic.  We passed out the materials and reminded them to put their names on them.  The kids jumped in and started making their drawings.  Many of them raised their hands to ask questions, and some quickly suggested that they were done and ready for the ink stations.  The parents and I went around the room to help the kids and give them tips.  Then we had the kids going over to the ink stations one by one for printing.  Their art work came out quite nicely and the children were pleased.  Everyone finished and the lesson wrapped up within the hour time that we were given.  I talked with the class again and thanked them for doing a great job.  Then I was surprised and flattered by the class saying “Thank you Mrs. Brown” loudly to me.  The parents and I packed up our materials and left the classroom.  I was happy that the lesson went relatively well.


Pumpkins Painting

Posted By Bonnie Comments Off on Pumpkins Painting

    Connor is so excited for Halloween.  He has been asking us to shop for decorations for the house to get ready.  Once we got some pumpkins yesterday, the boys wanted to decorate them.  Logan wanted to paint them, so we ran out to get some paints and the boys immediately wanted to put them in use.  Logan did not want to take his time to sketch; he just wanted to go for it with paint.  He quickly painted the eyes and mouth, and called it done.  Connor wanted me to help him and paint together.  After he did the face, he asked for white paint and patiently brushed through the entire pumpkin.  Logan decided to mix red and yellow to make orange paint and started painting his pumpkin.  After he saw how cool and scary Connor’s pumpkin was turning into, Logan wanted to paint his white too.  He was less patient compared to Connor, started to complain and asked for help.  With some encouragement, Logan finished turning his pumpkin sort of white (yellowish due to the previous orange coat) too.  Both pumpkins looked cool and being dried in our porch now.



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