Sunday, October 31, 2010

Back on the horse

Oh the shame. It's been nearly a month since I last posted. Somehow I just lost the blogging fever for a little while (I got distracted by other things...) and then got overwhelmed by all the catching up I had to do (because doing a post like this with so many photos takes -FOREVERRRR), so I kept putting it off...that's a cycle that never ends well.

On that note:

We went to Cape Cod earlier in the month to spend time with our friends Henrik and Lara and their cute boys, Ben and Eric. We had fantastic weather which made the whole weekend just that much better.

A little time on the beach...

cheering Ben on at his soccer game (go Falmouth Guppies!!)...
Viv was just sitting there watching the game when this little boy came over and was like:

" you doin'?"

pony rides at the local Pumpkin Festival...

Cute Eric

plus a bounce house and a big slide - that's some awesome fun right there.

A big highlight of the weekend was boat trip to Martha's Vineyard for Henrik and Curtis and the "big kids" (you know, the four and five year olds).

Henrik and Viv on the boat.

Captain Henrik and First Mate Ben.

Viv and Kathryn on the way over.

You know if there's a toilet on the boat it's going to get used...

Playing hopscotch on a street lined with the famous gingerbread houses.

On the carousel on Martha's Vineyard at the indoor (permanent) carnival. The carousel is from 1876!

Kathryn and Viv had fun collecting the rings as they went around and around...

and then Kathryn got the brass ring!! Woohoo! Free carousel ride!

Eating lunch outside.

Eating peanuts al fresco is super fun, especially when you can just chuck the shells on the ground!

On the way home, the winds had picked up and the seas were significantly rougher, causing major seasickness among all on board.

Poor kids!

It took quite a while for everyone to get back to normal... (I can't help it...I giggle every time I see this photo of Kathryn and Ben...Ben looks so sick!)

We even managed to have a few (mostly) kid-free dinners by feeding the kids first, putting them in their pjs and turning on a movie. They loved 101 Dalmations - their expressions were priceless.
Thanks for a super-good time, H&L!

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Apple picking

Last week Kathryn had a field trip to Ricker Hill apple orchard in Turner - our favorite place to go apple picking. Curtis went with her and got some fun photos.
Kathryn and her best pal, Paige

She was pretty excited about the trip. She could hardly sleep the night before and in the morning she kept saying "I can't believe the day has finally come!" She gets a little dramatic, further proclaiming that this was "the best day of my life!"

So, she had fun! She keeps telling people that she knows how apple cider is made and wanting to know if they do, too, because she is only too happy to share her vast knowledge on the subject.
Playing in the corn box.
On the bus ride home.

Funny kid.

Friday, October 1, 2010

Common Ground Fair

I've been going to the Common Ground Fair here in Maine for as long as I can remember. It's been around for 30+ years and I think that's nearly how long my family has attended and been involved.

The fair is sponsored by the Maine Organic Farmers and Gardeners Association and showcases all sorts of stuff associated with natural living - solar power, hand dying and spinning wool, tons of farming and gardening stuff, handmade crafts, stone masonry (let's hear it for the Maine Stoneworkers Guild - my family and friends!) and so so much more. Then there's the Social and Political Action area (read: bleeding heart liberals :) ), all the crazy high-priced food (but yuuummmmy), all the animals (we made three trips to see the bunnies...), the sheep dog demos, ox pulling, the kids' area with their face painting, haystack-jumping and vegetable parade and just all the general whole-lifeness of it all.
Crazy hippies.

So, I love the fair. Curtis is just meh about it. He doesn't have the same emotional attachement that I do, but anyway, he goes with me nearly every year with a minimal amount of grumpiness. I do appreciate it, Love.

My dad and brothers working on a stone bench.

I think my favorite part of the fair is seeing people and hanging out. (Though "hanging out" was significantly easier pre-children. Now it's all about "when can I get my faaaaaace paaaaainted mooooom" and "let's go to the bunnies again" and "popcorn!" and "waaaah." Sigh.) Anyhoo, I got to see some old friends from high school (and I mean old - we're like 35 now - sheesh) who I haven't seen in years and years and it was really wonderful. I don't know what the heck was wrong with us - not a single photo of us together. Still, it was great to see those dears (you know who you are!).

Betty checking out the sheep and border collies demo.

I think the kids' favorite part of it all was hanging out with their cousins. It's like they all really like each other or something. Go figure.

I love this picture of Dex and Kaylee. He almost fell asleep on her back. She carried him for a long time!

Because of the Extreme Food Prices, I brought a big bag of homemade pumpkin chocolate chip raisin cookies, which we supplemented with french fries, popcorn and apples (thanks, Tami!). It was waaay cheaper than paying $17 for a plate of Indian food (not joking about that).

At the request of a few people, here is the pumpkin cookie recipe:
Pumpkin Cookies

1/2 cup butter (1 stick)
1 cup sugar
1 egg
1 cup pumpkin (if you use an average size can of pumpkin, you should double the recipe - I always do and they freeze well, too)
1 tsp vanilla
2 1/2 cups flour (Aprill and Rachael - the kind I brought to the fair were almost all whole wheat (King Arthur White Whole Wheat) but you can do 1/2 and 1/2 or all white or whatever)
1 tsp baking soda
1 tsp baking powder
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp cinnamon
1 tsp nutmeg
(sometimes I throw a few shakes of ginger, clove or allspice in)
1/2 package chocolate chips (opt.)
3/4 cup raisins (opt.)
3/4 cup nuts (opt.)

Cream butter and sugar. Add egg, pumpkin and vanilla. Mix dry ingredients. Add to creamed mixture. Mix. Add chocolate chips, raisins, nuts, whatever. Bake at 350 for 15-20 min. until just starting to brown.
I love love love these cookies. My mom used to bake these and give them out at Halloween, which I think may not have made our house a super popular stop, but maybe the kids liked them. I don't know. I know I'd rather have one than a Kit Kat! (most of the time...)

At the end of our time at the fair - kids all tuckered out.