Saturday, November 17, 2012

Magic Mountain {A Mommy/Son Date Day}

Disclaimer:  I had a Groupon.  Just FYI.

Anyway, many moons ago I had purchased a Groupon for Magic Mountain.  My intent was to take the boys for a fun day out, sans the little sister.  Well, school started, things got busy with my sister having Brody, and before I knew it, I was getting emails telling me that my Groupons were about to expire.  So, I scheduled my sweet, super awesome parents to watch Natalie while the boys and I headed out for a mommy/son date day.
Matthew and Lucas on the NASCAR arcade game.
Ready for their race.

Lucas looks very serious about his motorcycle course.  
Matthew riding the motorcycle.
My parents came to get Natalie and went to Kristin and Joey's to baby sit for Brody for a little bit. Then, it was off to the poultry show at the fairgrounds. So while we were having a great time at Magic Mountain, Natalie was hanging with grandma and papa looking at chickens.  She loved it.  
Matthew belting up for his fast ride.
We started our day with a quick trip to Kohls' to grab the boys some long sleeve shirts to hold them over until Christmas.  Then, a run to Target for a few essentials, like LEGOS.  They each had about $35 to spend from picking up pinecones in my parents' yard over the summer. Five cents a pinecone....and they obviously picked up a ton!  So, after MUCH deliberation, they each decided on a new LEGO set, and off to lunch at Olive Garden-per their request.  
Lucas enjoying his ride around the go kart track
Then, it was off to Magic Mountain.  If you don't know what Magic Mountain is, it's an indoor arcade with laser tag, a kids gym/playset area, and then outside they have mini golf and go carts.  Good times.  The boys were so super excited.  I got them attraction wrist bands, 30 tokens each for games, and they were off.  Totally in their happy place.  
Maybe if Lucas pushed his glasses up, he could see better.  Just sayin'.
We played arcade games for awhile, and then headed outdoors for the go karts.  While they were waiting in line, they were able to scope out the "fastest" car.  That would be the one Matthew scrambled to get, of course.  But Lucas was happy with his, and they were off.  I had to explain to them that they were NOT like the ones at Disney-no track guide, they were actually driving these cars and needed to keep from running into something.  They had a blast.  We went back inside to do the laser tag.  Another first experience for them.  But, it must have been great because they requested a laser tag birthday party.
Finally, we finished up their arcade tokens, gathered our tickets and headed to the counter of kid utopia-aka, the cheap toys and candy that only are worth some paper tickets.  We cashed them in, and got some golf balls.  Let me say, if this round of mini golf is anything to go by, our family beach vacation next summer is going to be darn interesting.  Mini golf is not for the impatient, fast paced, over stimulated by video games and LEGOS nine year olds.  If Lucas wasn't hitting the ball too hard and pouting when it bounced off the green, he was guiding it to the hold with his club.  Matthew started off a bit gently, but when he saw small molehills, you'd think the mini golf course had transformed into a driving range.  
All in all, we had a super great day together. I love my boys!

Halloween 2012

Halloween 2012 was well.....cold, snowy, was more like a nasty winter day in October.  The costumes had been bought, tried on, and the boys especially were dying to wear them.  So, I tried my best to seek out an indoor Halloween experience and I was successful.  Thank God.  I wanted the kids to have the opportunity to Trick or Treat, and get the wear out of their costumes.  On Monday night of Halloween week, we found a church, via my friend on FB, who had moved their Trunk or Treat indoors.  

Trunk or Treat is basically when cars circle up, decorate their trunks, and hand out candy in a safe, family friendly environment usually in a church parking lot.  Northwest Bible Church had moved theirs indoors, SCORE!  Yes, on a school night I bundled up the kids in costume, and drove 30 minutes to do trick or treat.  I know, mom of the year right here.  I figured my bases were covered-they got to wear their costumes, get candy, popcorn, glow sticks, and get tired out-just in case Wednesday didn't present itself as an optimal trick or treat night.  
Well, as it turns out, Wednesday did turn out to be okay.  I had invited my in laws over to trick or treat with us, hand out candy, and hang out.  Love know I REALLY adore these people.  Normally my parents come over as well, but they were at my sister's house, snuggling with their new grandson Brody.  They really had the good end of the deal!
Darin stationed himself on the porch with ear muffs on and candy basket by his side.  Patty and the boys were off, and so Natalie and I started out, and Keith was hanging out with Christopher and Elly.  There was no way Natalie and I were going to catch up with the boys and Patty, so we just did our own thing for a few houses, until we had to go home to clean up owl poo...yea, the potty training thing isn't always working out.  Anyway, after she got cleaned up and ready to go again, it was dark.  So, we hit about eight more houses, which took a good 45 minutes because three year olds don't walk very fast....and then she was asking to go home.  Gladly. It was cold, windy, and I was more than ready to go inside.  

Meanwhile, Darragh {aka Wonder Woman} and Brandt {aka ELF....yea, looked JUST like Wil Ferrell}, had met up with the boys and had disappeared into the trick or treating abyss of Mill Valley.  They returned, a long time later, with way more candy than we gave out, red cheeked, and no coats on.  Nice.  All in all, it ended up being a great Halloween!

Jacquemin Farms with the Larsons

Lucas, Eliana, Matthew, Noah, & Natalie
It was a super beautiful, sunny fall day, so the kids and  I decided to go to Jacquemin Farms to meet up with some friends.  Brian and Sarah Larson are Natalie's god parents, but all of our kids get along so great together.  They have a first grader and a third grader, and they all play so nicely together.  Jacquemin Farms is a small pumpkin farm, about 15 minutes from our house.  They have a small straw maze, a corn box {in lieu of a sandbox}, some bouncy play things, and of course pumpkins.  

But, our kids don't go there for the pumpkins.....we go for the pumpkin donuts.  We came home with two dozen of the BEST homemade pumpkin donuts ever.  We only got one dozen last year, so this year we for sure needed more.
Natalie watching for the tractor and wagon to pick us up.

We went on the straw ride out to the pumpkin patch, just for the experience.  We didn't need to pick pumpkins because my parents had grown some in their garden this year and we were well stocked.  So Sarah and I chatted for a LONG time while Natalie was playing in the corn.  She was happy while Noah, Eliana, Matthew, and Lucas scrambled around the bouncy things, the straw maze, and begging for drinks and snacks.  It was a good time.  It ended up being an extremely warm and nice day, and we had a ton of fun!