Monday, October 27, 2014

Tappana Halloween Party VIII

Even though we're stilling living with my parents, we were able to get back to our Halloween party tradition. We've been here long enough to make new friends to invite, and we had a (forgive me, but I must) SPOOKtacular time :)

Since it was a new crowd, I was able to recycle some games from previous parties that I liked, and use them again. Our first game was Bloody Letters:

Basically, you search through bowls of bloody letters (Spaghettios A-Z, which are AMAZINGLY hard to find these days. I ended up having to order an entire case off if you need any Spaghettios, I can totally hook you up) to spell Halloween words. Those that earned the most points for words spelled, won a prize!

The second game was anther one we've done before that people really enjoyed: Pass the Pumpkin. I carved up this bad boy, and then filled it full of cold, oily, cooked spaghetti. I also mixed forty-five chocolate coins in with the spaghetti. As Halloween music plays, people pass around the pumpkin and when the music stops, whoever is holding it gets to dig around and pull out as many of the coins as they can. After all the coins are dug out, whoever has the most wins a prize!

I didn't get any actual pictures of the game in action because I was busy manning the music, but it happened. And it was great.

The final game was a new one that I've been waiting for YEARS to play. I haven't ever really lived in an area that allowed for it and now that we're living in an actual house with a yard, it was perfect....or so I thought. 

The game is called Bone Hunters, and basically you take two different skeleton bone sets and hide the different bones around outside. Then you have two teams race to find all their bones and get their skeleton put back together first.

The weather throughout the day was gusty and dreary, but dry. I knew there was a chance of rain (it is Washington after all), but I felt comforted by how the day was going. And then a half hour before the party started, it began to pour. And I mean pour. I was devastated. All the planning, preparation, and excitement was going to be ruined by rain. 

Luckily, after we played our first two games, I checked the weather again and it ranged from misty to lightly sprinkling...which in Washington means all activities are a go. So I ran back in and cheered, and we began.

The teams split up guys vs. girls, with the boys looking for the orange skeleton pieces and the girls looking for the white. Each team had two flashlights to share. Much cheating went on with boys pushing white skeleton pieces deeper into bushes, and girls retaliating in the same way, but eventually the boys found all but two pieces of their skeleton. They opted to take a two minute time penalty for each location I had to reveal, and ended up winning the game even with the penalty and despite having an extremely difficult time connecting their skeleton pieces.

Really they only won because they stole one of the girls' pieces, and only put it back after everyone headed back inside. Count on the boys to have to resort to debauchery to win. Cheaters. 

And that was our last Halloween game of the night. We also, of course, played the Name Game, otherwise known as Celebrity, or for those who run in our circles,The Divorce Game. But that's just plain tradition, and it was a blast as usual, although the boys won again.

As we played our games we enjoyed spooky treats.

I made Boogers on a Stick, Witches Broomsticks, Baby Pumpkins, and Pumpkin Teeth. I also had a plain old veggie tray to add some actual sustenance. These are just the treats I made before everyone brought their delicious foods which then overflowed off the counter onto the table and other nearby counters.  

We also had a costume contest. Mary Poppins and her Chimney Sweep won skeleton goblets full of candy.

Pretty impressive costumes came out this year, and choosing who to vote for was tough. Also, here's your preview of the Tappana family costume theme for the year. Do you recognize what movie we're representing? And can you guess what Lydia and Ammon are going to be?

Although, my heart hurt missing many of the people that we are used to seeing at our Halloween parties (seriously, I was so sad), we still had a great time and loved keeping our tradition alive in a new place.

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Tappana Times: October

Whew! We have been a bit busy around here this month!

So far, in October we have played a lot of dress up!

Despite my gentle suggestions otherwise, Ammon prefers high heels, dresses, and princess crowns. He has his own gender-appropriate armor and capes, but he wants to be like his sister.

He keeps it real always wearing the crown backwards, though. That's what the cool kids do.

Ammon also likes to view his toys up close and personal.

Ammon is a mini-me of his father, but I'm afraid he's got more than Brigham's looks if he already needs binoculars to see.

After Ammon's done playing and down for a nap, Lydia likes to spend her afternoons home from Kindergarten dreaming.

I wasn't sure if she was writing a story or a song, and I wondered what she was thinking about, but I wasn't about to ruin the moment by asking. Instead, I snapped a beautiful shot and marveled at this girl of mine.

And then, of course, she noticed me and I got a smile as well :)

We've had Family Home Evenings learning about the General Authorities, preparing for General Conference.

And we celebrated Kayleen's ninth birthday!

October brings early, cold mornings, but snuggling with these two makes it somewhat bearable.

After bogging through the mornings, I've managed to get moving on this year's Halloween costumes. Keeping it cheap, I've done lots of sewing to get the job done.

I bought this bed-skirt at Goodwill for four dollars, and used it to sew multiple parts of our costumes. This is a sneak-preview of one of the costumes. Any guesses as to what we'll be?

Unfortunately, I had a small hang up as I was putting it all together. I cut out a piece of the bed-skirt - it was measured perfectly - and only needed to iron it before sewing everything together. I set the iron on and it instantly burned a perfect iron-shaped hole in the material.

Gah! I was so worried I wouldn't have enough white material left from the bed-skirt to complete both costumes, but luckily I had plenty and it ended up fine....well fine if you are ok with cleaning weird, melty material off a hot iron, and remeasuring and cutting all over again. Luckily, I was able to avoid an extra Goodwill trip.

Speaking of shopping at Goodwill...the last time Ammon and I went, he excitedly stopped me in the parking lot to look at a car parked nearby.

"Mom! That car is just like Aunt Caitlin's car!"

And low and behold, it is! I knew Ammon was good with cars, but this shocked me. The last time we were around Sam and Caitlin's car was this past summer, while we visited with them on vacation in Utah. The fact that he remembered they have a silver Honda Accord, and that he can see another car like it in the parking lot, remember and make the connection, just boggles my mind. And to think I've been comparing him to his sister and assuming his memory isn't as good. He just cares about different things! Who cares about letters? It's the cars that Ammon anyway.

Now our family is off to celebrate Halloween with four various celebrations scheduled in the next couple of weeks, so there will be plenty more to share!