If I had to sum up the month of October with one word, there's only one word that would fit. October was FUN. It was busy and fun and a great adventure.
The month started with another school change for the girls. Mesa Public Schools were planning on going back to full time, in person learning after the break, and I decided we would switch them out of Montessori and back to MPS. To fully keep you updated and reminded, I pulled them out of MPS when in person learning couldn't happen and put them in Montessori. The girls were both sad to leave Montessori. They loved their teachers and friends, but I knew the resources we needed for Gwen to succeed would be better through the public school system. It's been an entire month now, and Gwen does love her teacher and friends, but she and Emily both remind me that they loved their old school. I loved it, too.
We went back to Forest Lakes for October Break. Both the girls and I went, and we had so much fun. It was so cold in the mornings that Gwen told me "I'm not going to wake up early in the morning until it's warmer." I was so thankful for that! The first morning we were there they woke up at 6, and that's too early and cold for the mountains. The rest of the time they slept until 7:30! Praise! We took several ranger rides to the local store for daily treats and that was a highlight to me. Abby's sense of humor is one of my favorites and she was a great hostess and ranger chauffeur. Gwen and Emily played with some nieces and nephews of Abby and built forts and played games for hours and hours every day. They played so hard that when I was taking a little rest, they found me and asked if we could all take a nap. After a legitimate three hour nap, we were ready to play again. We saw a coyote, heard some turkeys, and shot clay pigeons with decent accuracy. We ate like kings (Abby has cabin food down to a glorious science) and it was just so fun. Every day Gwen and Emily were dirty from head to toe, and I just love knowing they'll always remember the trip.
We had family pictures taken by Esther's cousin down by the Salt River. We all got gussied up and then ended up in the water. I was certain we weren't going to have any great pictures (that's my own self-conscious issue). When Myrna sent me the link with the images, I literally yelled to Jake that we looked great! He knew we would, but we can look pretty rough in pictures sometimes! ha! I got the idea from Grammy Jan to print some images onto canvases, and every time I see them I think about how much I love my family! I love them, and I think that's a big point of family photos.
Emily got word from her school that she was behind on shots. I called to figure out how many she would need. . . it was a whopping SIX! Poor woman. So the bribery began. I told her I needed a flu shot, and told her she needed some, too. Jake told her that he would be her a toy from Target, and also offered a treat, but Emily is no fool and knew the levels of trickery we were trying to use. She watched me get the flu shot without crying, but needing six shots is more than one measly flu shot. Needless to say, she cried. She screamed. She wailed. These are not surprising for our loud Emily child. As soon as they gave her a bandaid and 4 stickers, she stopped crying and dried her tears in preparations for the rewards end of the bribes. Moral of the story: Don't get behind on shots.
We had great weather and spent time at the zoo, parks, and backyard. We played with neighbors nearly every day at the end of the month.
Our ward put on its annual trunk or treat, and the turn out was higher than I've ever seen it. It was the week before Halloween (SO SMART! I hate when it's on the night of Halloween!) and we all parked our cars with spaces in between.
On Halloween, we walked around the neighborhood with our friend across the street. We got so much candy and had so many trick or treaters. We had 90 full size candy bars and have maybe a handful left. I love our neighborhood so much. I'm a big believer in revitalizing your area, and every year I've seen a markable difference here! We love this place. We love our home, our neighbors, our church congregation, and we are blessed!
|Our first ranger ride to the store.|
|The proud stick collector.|
|Coolest swing ever! It swings over a deep river bed, and is so cool!|
|She's proud of that feather! We love seeing the Roadrunner and she's convinced this feather is his.|
|Look at all those cousins! Gwen and Emily fit right in.|
|Abby telling scary stories!|
|We found the older kids fort, and it was incredible!|
|They made us pledge our allegiance to secrecy so the little kids couldn't find the big fort.|
|Our last stop to the candy store!|
|I LOVE THIS!|
|Gwen splashed us all so big!|
|Us at the doctor's visit|
|Gwen's new outfit.|
|Whenever the girls tell me to take a pictures, I do it. This was one.|
|Trunk or Treat!|
|Gwen's friend was also Wednesday Addams.|
|Pictures from Gwen's teacher. They had a costume parade!|
|Gwen's 1st grade class with Ms. Redd|
|Gwen, Emily, and Mia!|
|Trick or treat time!|
|Swoon swoon swoon.|