Westfield Costume Parade

On Sunday we participated in Westfield's Halloween activities, along with every other family in Westfield.  With the impending storm I think everyone decided to get in some trick or treating on Sunday because this may be the only chance.   Most of the businesses participate in handing out candy to the kids and then there is a costume parade with the Westfield High School Marching Band leading the way.

Some of the streets are closed which made it easier to get around town.  We met up with Lucas and Kaiden's family.






At 2:30 everyone gathered on the closed street and judges walked around handing out awards.  Quinn got a "Coolest Costume" award for his robot costume.  Yes, we pulled out the robot costume in hopes of an award.   About 50 other kids got the same award but that is a-ok.



Quinnbot and Dadbot.





Quinn with his medal and $20 toy store gift certificate.  He likes to cross his legs like that to confuse you to think his shoes are on the wrong feet.  Oh silly Quinnbot!



Leaves are Falling

We spent some time on Saturday prepping the house for Hurricane Sandy.  Although last year we didn't lose our power with Irene, we decided to clean the gutters and move stuff out of the backyard.  A single branch falling could shatter our patio table.   The leaves are falling like rain and our yard is covered.





Then we went out to do some treasure hunting at a nearby park.  It is an old golf course that was turned it to a public park with lots of paths for walking and lots of spots for hiding treasure.  We looked for about 9 and found about 6.  Our new count is about 64, give or take.

The boy had fun hiding behind trees.



But he wasn't feeling too cooperative about getting his picture taken in the leaves.


Now we wait for Sandy to arrive.  It's supposed to hit us Monday morning and continue through the day.  When we were out and about on Saturday, we didn't see many people around other than at Home Depot and the gas station.  After last year's Irene, everyone is getting extra prepared for Sandy.

Patterns

Since starting school this year, Quinn's brain seems to constantly be on overdrive mode.  A typical conversation in the car with him goes like this:  What's 2 + 1?  What's 10 + 10?  How do you spell pig?  What does that sign say?  Is orange, orange, orange, orange a pattern?  etc, etc.  It's great to see him so engaged and enthusiastic about learning.  Yesterday he suggested playing a pattern game.  He would draw a pattern and I would repeat it and visa versa. 



On the last line he created the pattern 4-4-2 and then I might have made a little mistake with repeating it.  Of course he noticed it right away and colored in one of my blue circles at the top for getting it wrong.   At the beginning of the school year he really didn't like to write but he's gaining so much confidence and having fun with it now!

Costume Parade

Today was Quinn's costume parade at school.  Each year the school picks a theme and this year's theme was "This Land is Your Land" so anything Americana.  About 75% of the kids follow the theme and the rest do their own thing, which is perfectly fine.

Last year we put alot of effort and hard work in to Quinn's costume and I think it showed.  This year we hit the "buy" button.  Nothing more american than a race car driver in his red, white, and blue costume.  He was one happy boy.



The kids march around the school for the other classes to see while the parents get busy blocking traffic.



The school is kind enough to give the parents the outdoor photo op.



And the indoor photo op.  Ms. Kate is on the far right in the scrubs, Mrs. A (Granny's daughter and art/science teacher last year) is Lady Liberty, and Quinn starts his day with Ms. Jaime the cowgirl on the far left.



Party time!


Reinforcement Pack

Every Monday Quinn brings home a reinforcement pack from school.  It's 3 - 4 pages of exercises related to what they are working on that week.  Each week the pack starts with a page to trace their full name 4 times using both upper and lower case letters.   In theory we should do a little bit each day but usually Thursday rolls around and we sit down and do it all in one sitting.   Quinn has been very agreeable and fully engaged.




The Last of the Celebrations

Saturday was Quinn's birthday party with his friends.  I gave him alot of ideas on different types of parties but he insisted on a birthday-halloween party at home.   The kids were encouraged to wear their halloween costumes and I made some really fun halloween food.   This year I outsourced the cake and was very happy to not have to worry about it.

Like all of his previous parties, I didn't plan any activities and just let the kids have fun playing together.  Don set up the train set on the Thomas table because that is always a big attraction.   Here's the calm before the storm.



Here's the birthday boy in his Race Car Driver costume.   He looked so adorable!!


Snack time.  Only one girl was able to make it to the party but she still wanted to come even if it was all boys!



Play time.



Kaiden looked so cute in his Joker Costume (shhh!! don't tell him it was actually a Robin costume).



Checking out his cake.





Time for cake!!






Quinn had such a great time and loved having his friends there for his party.  Now Quinn is under strict orders to stay 5 forever!!

Headstart

On the way home from school, Quinn and I frequently stop at a playground before going home.  We met a little 4 year old boy, Alan Lee, who likes to play with Quinn.  One day they decided to race to the top of the play structure.  Well Alan got quite a head start and took a short cut and beat Q to the top.  Poor Quinn couldn't take being beaten by a 4 year old so we had to head home.  Once we got home I demonstrated how a head start works but Quinn just wasn't having it.


Mama, why are you taking a picture of me when I'm sad?




Our Saturday

Our day started with a birthday party at a bouncy house for a Sundance friend.    You get your picture on the wall if you can reach the top of the slippery slide.  Don recruited some boys to form a chain to the top but time ran out before they got their chain together.



All the kids ready for pizza and cake.



After 2 hours of bouncing kids, we stopped at home for a little rest.  The boy is cradling my face :)



And then it was off for some pumpkin patching with 2 of our favorite little boys who insisted that Quinn get in the middle.




After a very loud and boisterous dinner with 4 kids, we headed home for a quiet evening.  Quite a lovely day!

South Mountain Reservation

Thursday afternoon Quinn and I met some friends for a walk through South Mountain reservation.  It was our first time there and we really enjoyed the easy trail walk.  The boys came upon a large fallen tree which became their playground for the next 45 minutes until we moved them along.



There's a dog park at the trail head with this great St. Bernard statue.  The boys used this as their playground for the next 30 minutes :)  Quinn was very sad when he had to leave his buddy and head home.

(I'm a big fan of getting this sunflare in my iphone image.  This is intentional.)  

Columbus Day Weekend

Last weekend we took a family trip down to Maryland to visit the family and also for a quick getaway. Mom and Pam offered to watch the Mighty One so Don and I could get away for the night.  We drove down Saturday morning, dropped off Quinn, and then hightailed it in to DC.  Our hotel was in the Penn Quarter district which turned out to be very conveniently located.  We parked the car and walked everywhere.   We didn't get down to DC until about 3 pm so we walked down to the Mall and walked through the Smithsonian outdoor sculpture garden and then on to the Newseum which was fascinating.   We only had about an hour until the museum closed so we chose to see the pulitzer prize winning photos, the berlin wall, the antenna from the WTC, the Unabombers cabin, and the gorgeous roof top deck.  




I made reservations at a restaurant called Grafiatto which is owned by a previous Top Chef contestent.  It gets rave reviews and seemed like it would be fun to boot.  Unfortunately the earliest reservation I could get was for 8:45 pm...living like Rock Stars!  So we had the evening to walk around town and grab a glass of wine.  We were pretty close to the new Verizon Center where the Washington Wizards and Capitals play.  It's right in the heart of what used to be Chinatown.  There are still some signs of the old Chinatown but it's quickly being gobbled up.    We had a great dinner and saw the chef Mike Isabella.  Sunday morning we were able to get in a quick trip to the Spy Museum and lunch at a modern dim sum restaurant.   Then back to MD.

Sunday night we had dinner at mom's house with all of Pam's family.  Quinn was very happy to see his cousins Alex and Ben.   It's cake time....raise your hand if you want cake.



And then on to presents!!  It was a pirate puppet from the Newman Family.  You can only imagine the fun Don was having with the puppet.



And a ball pit from Grams!  What a lucky little boy!



A great way to spend our Columbus Day Weekend!!!





2:19 pm

We never knew how 5 pounds 15 ounces could give us so much happiness and joy.   But we found out on October 9, 2007 at 2:19 pm.  The sweetest sound I ever hear was this little baby's cry.





Now 5 years later he is still the gift that keeps on giving.  Happy 5th Birthday to our sweet little boy!


This little man is 46 1/4" tall and 44.8 pounds.