Friday, October 31, 2014

Happy Halloween!

Ever since Harry was born Halloween has become my favorite holiday. The years prior I never really celebrated it. But, with a kid, it's just so much fun! I was really excited for this year because Harry was able to pick out his costume for the first time. He came up with a  of bunch ideas before he settled on the perfect costume. At various points he wanted to be a firetruck, Santa Claus and the Cat in the Hat.

After finding a hard hat in the Halloween section at Target it was official, Harry wanted to be Bob the Builder. I don't think anything will beat his Prince Harry costume from last year, but the Bob costume turned out pretty cute! The hard hat from Target was way too big so we returned it and got a kid sized one at Spirit Halloween. Not as nice, but at least it doesn't cover his eyes.

Finding the right Bob the Builder shirt was a challenge! Bob's shirt is red and yellow checked and I looked everywhere. I even tried finding fabric to make a shirt, but no luck. The best shirt I found was from Target of all places.

Bob's tool belt was a lot of fun to make! I used felt, heavy duty interfacing and tan belting. I printed out shaped of tools from Microsoft Word, traced them on the felt and interfacing and hand stitched everything together on the belting.

Yesterday Harry got to wear the costume to school for his class's Halloween party. All the kids were so cute! I figured all the girls would be Anna or Elsa, but there was just one Anna in the group. I was the head room mom, and I think all the kids had fun. We played a couple games, did a craft and there was more food and treats than a football team could eat, let along a class of 16 preschoolers.

Unfortunately, Harry started to get sick while at school. Ugh. He was fine in the morning, but by the time I got back to class for the party he had a runny nose, and it was obvious he wasn't feeling great. I took his temperature when we got home and it was a bit elevated. :(

So, as of now, plans for today are up in the air. We were planning on going to IHOP for breakfast (Harry and I did it last Halloween, and I was looking forward to making it a mama/son tradition), but we're holding off. I'm really hoping he'll be up for trick-or-treating at a few houses.

I hope you all have a great Halloween!!

Monday, October 27, 2014

Weekend Stuff

Harry and I have been trying for a few weeks to meet Ant downtown for lunch. Harry was sick one week and the next Ant wasn't feeling well and just wanted to come home. Friday the stars aligned and we all met up at Union Station around 1 o'clock.

From the train station we walked over to Epic Burger in the West Loop. Lemme tell you... it was epic! I got the junior turkey burger which was fantastic. I thought they made a mistake and gave me a regular burger, but I compared it to Ant's and it was much lighter in color. So juicy and flavorful. Surprisingly the fries weren't that great, but the burger more than made up for them. Harry got the grilled cheese and scarfed down every last crumb. He even said later that night how he had a "really great grilled cheese" for lunch.

After lunch we walked over to the French Market to look around. So much goodness in there! We left with half a dozen macarons from Vanille Patisserie. My favorites were the vanilla and mint chocolate.

After Harry went to bed Ant and I rented Neighbors from Redbox. Eh, not my favorite. Rose Byrne annoys me for some reason, so I guess I was biased against the movie from the start.

Saturday we had every intention of going to Boo at the Zoo at Brookfield Zoo. In fact, we dressed Harry up in his costume, got in the car and drove to the zoo. When we got there the line of cars to get into the parking lot was insane. I'd never seen it so crowded before. It was a beautiful day so everyone in the Chicago area must have had the same idea. We waited in line for about 20 minutes, realized we'd be waiting a whole lot longer, and decided to leave.

Harry was so upset. We felt awful, but knew it was for the best. I hate crowds and I doubt we would have gotten to see many of the animals up close. We didn't want to go home, so we stopped off at the Graue Mill in Oak Brook. Not really up Harry's alley, but it was something to do. I visited the mill when I was in grade school and have wanted to go back for a long time. I just wish I would have brought my nice camera! All I had was my crappy cell phone.

A beautiful cross stitch inside the museum. Of course I had to take a picture!

Notice how the J and U are missing, and the Q is a backwards P. How interesting! In the museum we bought a bag of their freshly ground corn meal. I'm excited to make some homemade bread with it.

As I said, it was a beautiful day and perfect for a walk on their hiking trails.

Oh, and a terrifying/will-be-funny-someday moment happened when we got home. Did I mention it was a nice day? Oh, I did. Well, the screen door was open, just like any other day during the summer. Ant and I were cleaning our bedroom and Harry was watching TV (Handy Manny- his new favorite Netflix show), when we suddenly hear, "Guys, I'm outside!" We bolt to the living room and yep, Harry was definitely outside. In just a t-shirt and flip flops, haha.

We were sooooo lucky he called out to us instead of just running. Who knows what could have happened, neither of us heard him open the door. The three of us sat down and had a nice little chat about how Harry has to ask to go outside first and that a parent needs to go with him.

We had a lazy Sunday, and now we're back to Monday. Happy happy!

Thursday, October 16, 2014


I hate when people say they're "too busy to blog," but here I am (again), saying just that. I hate how little I've recorded this year. So, for now, here's a little update on things.

Skin Cancer PSA
I've talked about getting my skin checked for melanomas in the past. I had 5-6 moles removed back in 2008/09. One of which was precancerous. Since then I've made it a point to get to the dermatologist once a year; my latest appointment was the other day. I expected it to go just as my last few visits, but I walked out with 2 less moles than I had when I woke up that day.

I went back yesterday to get my stitches out and whad'ya know, one of them was atypical/precancerous. The nurse said it looked like they got everything so I won't need to do any further treatment, but that could change once the doctor takes a look at them (my doctor's out on medical leave for a herniated disk). They asked that I come back in 6 months for a follow up scan.

So, moral of the story, if you have moles, go get them checked out! I had a couple bad sunburns as a kid so I'm sure that's why I'm dealing with this now. It's not the most pleasant experience having someone look at every inch of your body, but as with everything, early detection is key so it's definitely worth doing.

Fall TV
Oh, TV. How I love thee. Over the summer I really got in to Once Upon a Time. Such a fun show! If you're unfamiliar, the show focuses on fairy tale characters who were transported to present day Maine by a curse from the Evil Queen. The first season deals with trying to break the curse. It was created by LOST writers, so if you liked that show, you'll like OUAT. A lot of similarities in the way the stories are told, and tons of LOST actors make appearances.

This season is centering on Frozen. Harry has loved watching Elsa and Anna on screen. The first 2 episodes have been a little lackluster and a little too focused on the Arendelle clan, but I though the third episode was pretty good, it featured fellow Stephens College alum Elizabeth Mitchell (also a LOST alum).

I also just got in to Scandal. I know, about 2 years late. So hip. So with it. Some of the political story lines are a bit convoluted for me, but in general I like it. And I love Olivia Pope's wine glasses! So impractical. But being a classy, powerful DC problem solver allows for impractical life indulgences.

As far as new shows go, I've watched How To Get Away With Murder and Jane the Virgin. Loved the first episode of HTGAWM! Second and third weren't as good, but I'll continue watching for now. And I really enjoyed the first episode of Jane, too. Just aired the other night. Looking forward to watching more.

Oh, and I just started Gilmore Girls on Netflix. How did I ever go 14 years without those two in my life? I swear, Rory Gilmore is my spirit animal. An intellectual, human spirit animal.

I watch too much TV.

Paint Nite
Last week I met up with a couple friends at a local bar for a Paint Nite event. It was a lot of fun! We drank wine and painted pretty pictures.

Photo courtesy of Britney :)

I was surprised at how un-awful mine turned out! The instructor did a good job teaching us each step. My clouds are a little cartoony, but I was 2 glasses of Riesling in by that time, so I'm blaming the wine. 

Room Mom
I'm the official head room mom for the preschool Halloween party. Not sure how I got that distinguished title, but there ya have it. The party should be fun, it's only an hour long and I hear 2 year olds have notoriously low expectations for class parties.  And, bonus, Harry is excited that I'm going to be at the party. Doubt he'll have the same attitude in a few years, so I'm taking advantage while I can.

Happy Thursday! 

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

35 Months

Just one more month until Harry turns 3! I still remember the day he was born so clearly, it does not feel like it was so long ago.

  • I meant to say this in last month's update and totally spaced, but... Harry is now writing letters! So far he can do A, H, J, O, T, U, V and W. Some are more clearly written than others, but he is definitely getting the hang of it. His W is so funny, it looks like 5 W's strung together :).
  • School is still going really well. Although yesterday when I picked him up I noticed he wasn't sitting at the tables with the rest of the class like he was supposed to- he was in the back of the class wandering around. But, he's learning a lot and I think he's becoming more confident in interacting with kids his own age- my main goal for the year.
  • At school they sing lots of songs. Here are a few fun ones we've started listening to at home.
  • As far as other songs go, Harry is obsessed with Taylor Swift's "Shake It Off." He sings it all the time. The other day he was screaming it during nap time.  
  • Potty training... what's that?? We really are no closer to being diaper free than we were back in April.  He'll pee in the potty 1-2 times a day, but that's it. Trying to get him to poop on the potty is like pulling teeth. He freaks out if you even mention it. At this point I'm really wondering if we will be sending him to kindergarten with a diaper on.... (I'm sure we won't, but it feels like we will right now!)
  • Noises at bedtime have suddenly started bothering him. I'm pretty sure he's just hearing someone in our building flush the toilet, but it's kept him awake many nights this month.
  • Cute things he's said this month.
    • "I bit my teeth."
    • "Mom, your hair's so crazy, you need a haircut."
    • "Hi Mom. Are you hi?" (laughed for 5 minutes straight on that one!)
    • "I got some cry in my eyes."- When he was wiping away some tears, so adorable!
    • "The dark is gone!" - Says this every morning when it's sunny out.

Thursday, October 2, 2014

Sonny Acres Farm

Happy October! To get in the spooky spirit, yesterday we drove out to West Chicago to visit Sonny Acres Farm for our annual pumpkin patch trip.

The past 2 years we've gone to Goebbert's Farm and thought it'd be fun to try something new (I've been to Sonny Acres before, but it was a million years ago in high school). I don't know which farm I like better. Goebbert's is prettier and bigger, but there's something about Sonny Acres that's quite charming. And there was the sweetest smell in the air- I'm guessing it was just the pumpkins, but it was fabulous!

If you're local, every Wednesday in October is "Wristband Wednesday." You get unlimited access to the carnival for $10. After checking everything out we got Harry a wristband and he was more than excited to try out the different rides.

We did the cars and train first, both old favorites. Then Harry got crazy and asked to go on both the flying elephants and dragon roller coaster.

Let's see that one close up.

Awwwwww... He definitely was unsure the first few laps but was smiling by the end of the ride. He said he had fun!

There's a ton to do at Sonny Acres, but a lot of it is geared towards older kids. So after we were done with the carnival we picked out our pumpkins. 3 little gourds, 2 small pumpkins and one big one. I think we're actually going to carve one this year.

I love that he'll happily pose for pictures now (knock on wood)! He has such a cute little smile. Even if he does look the wrong way most of the time ;)

And just for fun, here's a comparison of Harry's past pumpkin patch excursions.

2012 | 2013 | 2014
What a cutie pie! Look at his hands, they're the same in all 3 pictures. I didn't notice until I made the collage. Weird, right?
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