I think October might be the most glorious month in Minnesota. It's just Heaven around here. We were blessed with a very long stretch of sunshine and those perfect temps in the 60's and 70's. But beyond the weather, all around us the trees were dripping with beauty. Shades of gold and auburn and red filled the landscape and framed every picture just perfectly. And speaking of pictures, October was the month that I really got to play with my new camera and figure out just what she could do! I'm sure I'm breaking all kinds of blogging rules with the number of pictures I'm posting today, but consider it my gift to the relatives! Here's our month in review...
This guy and I spent a lot of time playing out side while Ava was in school. Knowing the opportunity to do that is always short lived in Minnesota, we took advantage of it while we could!
Carter is growing like a weed these days but I began noticing just how much he was shooting up in October. He is a toddler no more, this guy is all boy now!
Just a few days into the month we moved all of our stuff (again) and got ready for the new carpet to be installed.
It took me a week to get everything packed up and out, but in a matter of hours it was all done! AMAZING!
After the last "big" install, we all took a little time to just breathe again and enjoy our upgrades! We were definitely over all the upheaval.
Preschool marched on and Miss Ava didn't miss a beat! She and Daddy love their Wednesday morning routine together and I love that they get this time in the car together this year.
Soccer in October means the conference tournament and the state tournament play. After they came in second for the regular season play, we cheered Trav's team on in the conference championship game...
...it was a cold, drizzly day and a tough game.
Unfortunately we lost in double overtime after our last minute shot hit the goal post and bounced out. Killer! But we love the coach and we're always proud no matter what the scoreboard says!
The following day we had an exciting day at Church when the Duck Dynasty crew came for a fundraiser! Thanks to a friend, Trav was able to have Mountain Man in our Junior High group that morning, which was so fun! I'll share the story and some pics in another post, but it really was awesome!
Alan and Si came for a fundraiser that a local Christian school held, our Church just happened to host it for them.
I loved what they had to say and yes, Si did bring and drink his iced tea the whole time!
We've been fans for awhile, but this really made us appreciate them even more!
I was working in hospitality for the event so I got to grab a pic with Mountain Man! Ha! Such a sweet man and his accent really is as thick as molasses and his drawl as sloooooowwww in person as it is in the show! And his real name is Tim.
Our dear friends were in town for a wedding that same weekend and we got a great couple of hours with them before they headed back to California! I miss Lisa and it was so fun to hug her and catch up in person again!
We celebrated Carter's big day with our small group and enjoyed the chaos of many small children and lots of sugar!!
We are so grateful for these families and the friendship we share with them as we parent. I love this pic because my friend Echo is very pregnant in this picture and the very next morning she gave birth to #4, little Duke!
One of the highlights of the month for me was going to the Apple Orchard with Ava and her class. I had such a sweet time with her and I loved to watch her in her new element!
It didn't hurt that we got an amazing day to be there and I had plenty of photo opportunities!
I took the kids to the park one night before Awana and happened to catch the most perfect lighting. I took some of my favorite pictures ever that night, it was just a breathtaking Fall night.
And then the sun hit the lake and I got these shots that are my favorite so far!
Nothing like an October sky in Minnesota.
On the 10th this little cutie turned 3 years old!
We had a little breakfast party in the morning together and then we went to cheer Trav's team on for the district championship game. It was a game that would have made school history had we won, but sadly we didn't.
Thankfully the game was next to an amazing park and the birthday boy was not suffering!
Loving that squeeze of death right there!
Carty has been such a joy to our family and it's hard to believe 3 years have already come and gone! We love you buddy!
With soccer over, our evenings opened up and we had Daddy to ourselves again!
We took advantage of the warm nights and got in some play time every night that we could.
Hard to believe we were in shorts and sleeveless dresses in mid-October but we weren't arguing!
Later that weekend we got out the birthday cake and had a little family party at home.
The candle was blown out and who knows if any wishes were made??
We promised the kids a family movie night and due to his birthday, Carter got to pick the movie!
So we watched Cars 2 and no one was surprised about that!!
Later in the month, we went to a good-bye party for my sweet friend Darla and her family. It was a very bittersweet goodbye, so happy to see them move closer to family and back home, but very sad to send them off!
Clara and Carter were born just a few days apart and we have enjoyed embracing motherhood together these last years! I love this pic of Clara all snuggled up with Trav! So funny :)
These little girls are too cute, my friend Nicole's daughter Brooke and little Clara are two girls that Ava adores. We will miss Clara and her little sister Wendy so much!! Not to mention Darla and Brian. Thankful for blogs and smart phones that make life apart a lot easier.
Out for another walk in our neighborhood again...
Fall leaves, nothing like it!
My hard-working man, so deserving of some downtime after working round the clock during soccer season.
Teaching Carty to skip rocks!
Love those big eyes, full of wonder...
Yay for fun daddies!
My favorite bushes every year. I just love to watch them turn electric pink in the height of the Fall color. They are right outside the kids' window so we always have a perfect view.
Somewhere in October we passed around a respiratory infection and in true form, I got the worst of it. The kids only had a few days of feeling bad but I ended up with 2 weeks worth. Unbelievably Travis avoided it all together, but thankfully he was a great nurse!
Despite all the sickness, we managed to sneak in a trip to the pumpkin patch for some pumpkins!
My Dad and his longtime friend were in town to play golf so we got an extra treat when then spent a few days with us!
It was very sweet to have Daddy freed up again and soft carpet to play on! While I recovered on the couch these three had a grand time too.
Ava continued her routine of waking up and immediately figuring out what dress she could wear to school that day?? She's got quite an opinion and no hesitation about expressing it. Wonder who she gets that from??
Travis was really hoping we could get out of town for a few days but we couldn't find a string of days that really worked so we settled for an in-town getaway that was great for the kids!
Lots of giggling...
... and splashing!
But I'm thinking room service was the highlight for me!
We managed to carve some pumpkins for the kids, Belle for Ava and Pluto for Carter!
They loved them but Travis and I are glad that only happens once a year. It's a lot of work!!
Travis and Carter and I got to experience a real treat when Ava's preschool had their annual Harvest Party and Costume parade!
Oh my, what a parade it was!! Each class sang a few songs and said their class verse. Ariel didn't disappoint in her participation, we got such a kick out of her!!
Especially that wig!
For Awana that night we joined in the "dress like a Biblical character" fun and these two went as Mary and Joseph. It was a very last minute decision but we were able to piece some outfits together, complete with an authentic dress that Trav brought home for Ava last summer from Israel! Carter was more than happy to bring his tools with him that night as well. They were so cute!!
And finally, Happy Halloween!!
We donned our Halloween wear on the last day of the month and Daddy took these two out for lunch at one of our new Chik-Fil-A's in the metro.
Ava was still keen on a head-scarf from her Mary costume so she requested another one on Halloween, ha!
We were proud to hit the streets that night with our brave Fireman...
...and beautiful Princess Ariel!
October was a fun month for the four of us and full of great memories! I'm always amazed at all that we've done when I look at pictures. In my head it seems like we haven't been up to much lately but I guess that's not true! I think kids give you millions of opportunities for making memories, the key is just stopping long enough to recognize it and document it.
I'm very thankful for all that we shared together this month and especially for Mr. Fun by my side!!
Life really is better together, isn't it??
And that friends, was my Ode to October...