Monday, October 31, 2011

Charly Was a Little Lamb

Our Halloween started last Thursday night, when we brought Charly to Allison for Mom's public library festivities. Last year we brought her as a penguin and she enjoyed watching all the little kids in their costumes listening to scary stories. This year, the library had Minute to Win It games planned for the little ones. Charly doesn't quite have her hand-eye coordination down pat yet (although she's not too shabby) so she wasn't going to be playing anything. But the Grandmas like having her there and she has fun people-watching so we made the trip. Plus, Grandma and Grandpa Henning were going to keep her overnight because Kelli and I had parent-teacher conference planning time the following day.

On Sunday, Kelli decided it was time to clean and carve the pumpkins she bought in Gays Mills. Charly took one look at the guts we were pulling out and wanted nothing to do with it! She's a bit of a neat-freak.

Last year we did not get around to carving the pumpkins we bought in Wisconsin. That made Kelli sad. So this year, we carved. We didn't purchase a kit so I freehanded simple designs on them and we both cut away. Charly thought they were silly. We thought they looked pretty cool when lit, for being last minute.

While I cleaned and carved (and watched the Patriots get embarrassed by Pittsburgh), Kelli took our little lamb outside for some fresh air. She loves it outside, she loves neighbor John, and since Mel doesn't take the kids out as much now that the weather is getting cooler, we feel like she's trapped inside. We're trying to take advantage of as much of the nice weather as we can, before we're snowed in this winter. Not sure how that's going to go. I'm envisioning an army of snowmen standing guard in our front yard . . .

Tonight, we wanted to see how Charly would take to trick-or-treating and we were a little apprehensive since she's so shy and reserved around strangers. Last year we brought Charly to Allison and hung out at Mom and Dad's house but this year, we wanted to break her in. Ashley and Beau's neighborhood is built for trick-or-treating and Charly and Cruz seem to like each other, so we thought it'd be fun to let them trick-or-treat together.

Charly wasn't sure what to think of Cruz's hungry caterpillar antennae so we couldn't snap a picture of the two of them together but we were able to snap plenty as Charly went door to door scoring candy! Kelli or I held her for the first few doors, but after a while she caught on herself, even eagerly snatching candy out of happy ladies' hands and waving "bye bye" while she stuffed it in her bucket. It got colder as the night wore on, and Charly kind of stole Cruz's ride from him (his Radio Flyer wagon). After we were finished in Ashley and Beau's neighborhood we trekked across town to one of Kelli's coworkers, and then went home to finally feed Charly supper! At 8:30! It was a busy but fun night and Kelli even had watery eyes a few times watching Charly waddle up to doors and holding out her bucket for a treat.

I'm sure next year her and Cruz will be pros and it'll be our new little one strolling along beside in the wagon.

Monday, October 17, 2011

A Week of Firsts

What a great week! This sure has been a week of firsts with some unforgettable moments along the way! Listed below are my top ten firsts this no particular order!

10. Charly wore her first real ponytail! The type of pony tail where I can fit all of her hair in a twistie without any of it falling out!

9. I got out my maternity clothes from the orange tote and hung them in my closet. This was the first time I had taken them out and hung them up since Charly was born. I suppose it might soon be time to wear those clothes again at 20 weeks pregnant!

8. I made my first apple crisp. We had plenty of apples from Wisconsin and thought I better put them to good use! After taking 40 minutes to cut up apples, it was rather simple to make. And might I add....quite delicious! Thank you Neeley's for the recipe! I think what made this experience even more great is the fact that our little girl sat on the counter the whole time with me and watched me cook eating slice after slice of apple. Hopefully some day she will enjoy the art of cooking!

7. We began a new tradition at our dinner table, during diaper changings, and hanging out in the living room. All three of us sing the "Oh, Baby, Baby" song...those are the only lyrics we know, but it sure gets Charly laughing and singing and us enjoying the simple joys of singing silly songs! (To do: capture this on video)

6. I had my first pregnant moment of forgetfulness. I was so excited to pick Charly up from daycare on Friday and start our weekend that I forgot something important in the classroom. I grabbed my keys out of my purse, picked up my school bag filled with personal narratives, and headed out my door. I got in the car, picked up Charly, and went to grab my phone to call Jordan on the way home like I do every night, but when I went to grab my phone out of my purse, there was no purse. Did I misplace it in the car? Nope. Did I leave it on top of the car and drive off? Nope. Did I set it down in the parking lot when I went to unlock the car and put my school bag in the car? Nope. Did I bring it into Mel's when I picked up Charly? Nope. Did I leave it at school? But how could I leave it at school if I had my keys? Don't ask me...but that's what I did. We went up to my school on Friday night to look for it and Jordan found it right by my desk. What a relief! My janitor, Rick, told Jordan as he left, "It's only just begun". You are right Rick...I bet I have many more of these moments!

5. Charly wore her first New England Patriots shirt to cheer on Tom Brady against the Cowboys. Charly and daddy looked pretty adorable in their football attire!

4. In my suggestion box in my classroom, I received the first suggestion for baby names from one of my students...Jose for a boy and Charlotte for a girl. I am glad to know my students are using the suggestion box the way I intended it to be used...maybe they just know how difficult it is for me to make a decision!

3. I actually felt the baby kick! He/She has been moving around for weeks, but to feel the first kick was an amazing first for this second baby!

2. For the first time since I have been pregnant, I stayed up past 11:00 on a school night and actually graded writing papers! Hooray for me!

1. We met Baby Henrichs and saw its photogenic self on October 11. The baby was adorable and most importantly we found out it was healthy. More to come on our 20 week ultrasound...words are still hard to describe this amazing experience!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Apples and Curds

One of our favorite days of the year usually comes in early October, when Kelli and I travel with her parents to Praire du Chien, Wisconsin to take in the leaves, buy some apples and cheese, and eat some waterburgers at Pete's. We've been making this trip for at least seven years, and I can't remember ever being able to wear shorts!

Our first stop of the day is always my personal favorite. Valley Fish & Cheese.

From Prairie du Chien, we drove up the road to Shihata Orchards.
We bought some apples and Charly played in the pumpkins.

In Gays Mills, Kelli and Carol had to visit The Pumpkin Lady.
Each year, the same lady is set up in the parking lot of a bank.
She sells trailer after trailer of pumpkins, dirt cheap.
Kelli and Carol buy enough to fill the back of the vehicle.

Charly actually posed for a picture outside Sunrise Orchards!

The line for Pete's was too long. We didn't get waterburgers this year.

Chad and Megan were shopping for apples with Jackson and Griffin too.
So we all met for a late lunch at Mr. McGregor Beer and Brats Garden along the river.

We ended the day with a walk through Pike's Peak.
With rain coming this week, we lucked out and may have seen the trees at their peak.
Charly loved looking at all the colors and playing in the leaves.
We even ran met my mom and dad with Beau, Ashley, and Cruz.

Charly and Cruz were thrilled to see someone their own age!

It was a long and busy day, but always worth the trip.

I would've slept most of the way home if it wasn't for the entire car shouting, "Move that bus!" through West Union!