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Thursday, November 1, 2012

The ONLY Place to Be!!

One weekend in October every year is "Halloween at Nana & Papa's". We have been doing this for as long as we have had grand children. We all love Halloween in our family and the celebration pretty much goes on all month long. Of course, as some of the kids are getting older and have more responsibilities (sports events, school events and yes, even a job), I knew it would get harder and harder to find a weekend they could all be here. But, find one we did!!! And how happy that made us old folks!!!!!!

We always start with a group picture-such as it is. Pretty hard to get everyone looking at the camera and smiling at the same time so we have learned to "take what we get". Then, we move on to family and individual pictures. The last thing we do is all of the kids under the welcome arch but this year, somehow, we forgot that one. I am kind of sad because it is fun to see how everybody has changed over the year, but the next time I have all 7 of them together again, I will see what I can do!

The Hutchisons



The Masellis


The Hollands




We always do at least one craft but since this has been a pretty rough year for all of us and I really wanted the cousins to just have some good bonding time, I wanted a craft that was really simple and kid friendly and went to one that has been all over the blogs and Pinterest of late-the wobble eye frame. I bought inexpensive frames and sprayed them black. Then I loaded up on wobble eyes fron the Dollar Tree and pulled out my trusty Aileen's Tacky glue. ALL of the kids were able to make their own frame-some had more eyes artfully arranged and others went with mostly the large eyes in a row, but somehow they each looked great. We downloaded the pictures we had just taken and they each picked their favorite. I printed them and we slipped them into the frames. I also had a bunch of glittery Halloween die-cuts and some of the kids used them as embellishments (or ribbon) and some chose to leave theirs with just eyes. I am sad that I never got around to making one for myself. Usually I make a sample but this seened so self explanatory, that I didn't-oh well, there's always next year!

Then. the kids took turns making our chocolate covered mummy Oreos. Another simple project and we bagged up the extras and gave them as gifts to their parents when they came to pick them up the next day.

It was truly a gorgeous day-really the first big hint of autumn we had had-so time outdoors was a must! Santa brought the swing set and tree house to our yard on Hannah's first Christmas almost 16 years ago and it still stands and has been loved by all! I made sure there was lots of time for plenty of outside play time-for all ages! It is so much fun to watch all of their imaginations at work and so heart warming to see all ages doing things together-the 4 older girls are just wonderful with their younger cousins and I am so happy the younger ones are getting these memories of family time as well!

Then, we were on to dinner preparations. Each one made their own mummy french bread pizza (sorry, no "after" pix) and while they were baking we made "scream bananas", "haunted trees" and "string cheese witch fingers". By this time, we were ready for the Gator game so dessert was simple-ice-cream sundaes with Halloween sprinkles and our Oreos.

Since the 2 boys were having Lego withdrawal, it was now time for that while 2 "crazies" went swimming-BRRRRRR- and the rest of us watched the game.

During halftime, Presley got a Halloween manicure-reminds me of my 3 girls when they were little. Where does the time go???

After the game, we all settled in for a Halloween movie and conked off one at a time. Sunday brought Halloween Captain Crunch-because it turned your milk green- and Halloween Fun-fetti pancakes thanks to Aunt Becky.

All too soon our weekend was over. Always a sad time, but we knew that there were pumpkin patch visits, our big family costume party and trick-or-treating still to come, so we said our good-byes with tons of new memories and the promise of the rest of this wonderful month still to come! Stay tuned.

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