More NJ Fun

Sunday we were able to have our little angel baby blessed. (I need to get some photos of her in her all gussied up in her gown). As my parents ended their stay with little Hazel's blessing, Phil's parents started out theirs, so we've been able to continue all the fun throughout the week.

Some of the highlights included an evening spent in downtown Summit, looking around shops, playing at the park and going out to dinner. Ryder and Penny even lucked out with some free balloons from a party shop owner closing up for the day!

And of course, more pumpkins! This time we went to Hillview Farms in Gillette, which was fun because they had some peacocks that Ryder could have spent all day looking at. 

(I know what you're thinking--but there really were peacocks there, not just Hazel in her bow)

Phil and I feel so very blessed to have had both our parents here (especially, since we're so far away) for such a special little event.

Now...back to reality!

Pumpkin Picking @ Wightman's

Living in the East Coast I've always wanted to find a fun place to go in the fall for an authentic harvest experience. We visited Wightman's Farm today with my parents and had so much fun going on a hay ride, picking out a pumpkin and getting a donut. I loved every second of that beautiful place. We also lucked out with fabulous weather and no crowds. I was so happy we got to do this while my parents were here :)

 Our trusty farmer/tour guide with his informative signs ;)

 Hazel is still unsure about the whole thing. She was just cranky she didn't get a donut

Who Would Have Thought?

Good times are being had around here! We had our first set of guests come to stay with us over General Conference weekend.  One of Phil's bestest friends along with his little family graced us with a fun visit. Besides being a huge fan of him and his awesome wife, it was so great to have our kiddos play together. Who would have thought these two friends would each have his own adorable daughter(s) one day?

Of course, Penny loved Nadine

Luckily, my parents arrive tomorrow. I fear if any more time passes before another delightful distraction, I just might have time to get overwhelmed enough about moving to actually do something about it. I almost got there today, but thankfully, I was smart enough to call my mom who reminded me we'll be par-tay-ing in less than 24 hours. Phew, productivity averted.

Happy Hamster

There were a lot of people who told me having three kids is hard, but I was curious as to how hard and hard in what way. Well, now I know.  Simply put, I'm plumb busy. Which is good, because my days are fulfilling and I'd much rather be busy than not. However, it's quite frustrating because even though I'm going and going, I'm pretty sure not a whole lot is getting done. Yup. I'm pretty sure that load of laundry I'm staring at over there has been sitting there for three days. In short, I feel like a hamster on a treadwheel. Although, I am a happy hamster, I just have to get used to this new "pace" if you can call it that.


A couple of photos from August. R & P before going to the pool and Hazey girl's first bath: not a fan :)

However, this pace isn't really helping me prepare for the three weeks worth of visitors in October. Thank goodness though, because its the only way I would ever feel the need to do some much needed fall cleaning and purchase things that one wouldn't normally, until you realize other people are going to be seeing them... like oven mitts, for example.

And by the time November rolls around, we'll be trying to pack and make arrangements to move. I can't remember how much I've mentioned on this blog, but we're moving to Sydney, Australia sometime in December. Usually, something that would cause me a lot of anxiety has actually been the cause for a lot of excitement. (See you later, Northeast winter!) Oh, and knowing we'll only be there eight months probably helps too.

Even though it's all in the name of good fun and exciting things, it looks like I'll be running on that treadwheel of mine for a little while longer.

Seattle Wedding

A coupld of weeks ago we took a whirlwind trip to Seattle for my sister-in-law's wedding. Besides throwing the reception in Grandma and Grandpa Shorten's backyard, we tried to make the most of our time there which left us busy pretty much every moment we were there.

1. Got reaquainted with everyone.
2. Had a belated birthday celebration for Ryder

 I laughed at them giving 20-month old Elsie a drumstick in lieu of the baseball bat. 

 The spoils

 Penny was so excited for Ryder

1. Went blackberry picking with bride-to-be, Aunt Jaimie
2. Jaimie's bridal shower

 Some picked blackberries, some ate them...

By the time the actual shower commenced I was too pooped to take anymore pictures...and I didn't even really do anything--plus, I was too busy enjoying myself.

THIS is the lady who did everything. Carly in her calm, collected, directing mode :)

1. Everybody ran around like chickens with their heads cut off trying to get everything done.
2. Ryder and Penny got unforunately neglected :)
3. Pulled together a song for the happy couple at the wedding dinner that night.
4. Attended the wedding dinner for the happy couple. It was a very nice evening that ended with a  blowout, brought to me by Hazel, all over my white skirt.

1. The big day!
2. First, the sealing at the Seattle Temple
3. More scrambling to get ready for the reception
4. The reception!

 Thinking it would be a cute photo op, I told Pen and Ryder to run up and give her a hug. I didn't really plan on Penny bowling her over....

Ryder took full advantage of the day by taking a moment on the temple grounds after the sealing and then doing a little flirting at the reception :) He's got his priorities, that one.

1. Sleep in (as much as possible)
2. Church
3. Hang out with friends

Phil, Derek, Erik and Ryan Circa. 2012. We shared a couple of our kids with Erik, since he doesn't have any yet ;)

1. Took a little boat ride on Lake Sammamish
2. Ate at Spiros
3. Packed up to go home!

Whoosh! I told you it was a crazy week! Congratulations, sweet Jaimie!