We woke up to a dusting of snow this morning which lasted well into the day. But by the time Hyrum was asking to build a snowman the snow had all but melted. We told him that if it snowed again this afternoon that we would build a snowman. Around 2 o'clock it started to snow, and snow, and snow. By the time it ended we had a good two inches on the ground. So we bundled up and headed outside.
This wasn't the first snowman he's been involved in he and my dad made one while we were in Michigan but then he was much more interested in shoveling the snow than making the snow into a man.
He started to get the hang of it but quickly lost interest and decided he had better things to do with the snow.
Look at that mischievous grin. I just love this picture. Of course Dad was not taking that laying down.

He also discovered the joys of eating snow. It's a rite of childhood. At least we knew it was new fallen snow. And apart from it being full of fallen leaves that we didn't have a rake to clean up, it was "clean".
Once he started to see the snowman come to life he was sooo excited to help with him. He was beside himself with excitement to put in his carrot nose and wrap a scarf around his neck.
And here's the final product with Mom, Dad and Hyrum.
I couldn't help it. We had to watch a Christmas movie after we came in and had our hot chocolate. I couldn't bring myself to watch a real obvious Christmas movie but we did introduce Hyrum to Frosty the Snowman. It's not REALLY that Christmasy...is it?


There is a lot going on at home in Michigan for my parents. Everything from remodeling the house to getting another house ready to rent to taking care of my grandmother that had her third surgery in a year. I was determined to make this a nice relaxing vacation for them. I tried to get BYU football homecoming tickets to quickly get their minds off things going on at home. Unfortunately BYU was doing great at the beginning of the season and tickets were sold out before I could get any for a reasonable price. But we did go down to campus to get a taste of the excitement.

We got them shirts thinking we'd be at the game and they wore them anyway despite the lack of tickets. We planned to go somewhere to watch the game but they didn't have it on and when we finally found a place to watch it we didn't WANT to watch it anymore. They lost PATHETICALLY. So much for a great start to the vacation.

The rest of the week was a blur of activity. Family dinner on Sunday. I resisted making a list of things that we could use help with in the house but little by little they began to find projects around the house to complete. These are just a few

Harvesting ( and ultimately cleaning out )the garden before the snow flew

Included in the harvest were the nectarines from the blasted nectarine tree that NEVER RIPENED! ( and still haven't for that matter ) I have to say that the axe may be coming for it next year unless things change.

Fixing leaks in the kitchen that we didn't even know that we had

Working miracles with our cloudy glasses

Cleaning out and organizing the pantry.

Installing and reinstalling towel bars rings and other bathroom hardware

Amazing chalk drawings on the driveway


I'm telling you who ever drew these has a serious future as an artist or at least an illustrator! ;)

Sugar cookies made and frosted...and eaten. Sorry no picture available. :)

Hyrum's room reorganized to put in his new bed and figure out how we're going to get a twin sized bed and crib into one room.

Thermostat MOVED!!
The rectangle on the wall on the right is where it used to be. Right in the middle ( although not centered ) of the wall completely making the wall unusable for artwork. He moved it over to where he's standing. It was no small project. My dad is a genius and very determined.

The tools. What's even more amazing to me is that you'd have no idea where it had previously been after he'd textured and painted the wall. Unfortunately we've been slow to put up the art work since we have a table invisioned for that wall too and we don't have that yet.

A new living room fan installed
Here's a refresher of what the OLD one looked like
We like the new one much better.

The night before they left they were even trying to start new projects like putting a light in our pantry
This may not find it's completion until my parents are back in Feb for another "relaxing" visit.

Thank you Mom and Dad! We love you!!


**WARNING: Very long post and lots of pictures**

We had three Halloweens this year. Three different Halloween events...and it was exhausting but SOO much fun!

First up was the ward/neighborhood trunk or treat and Halloween carnival on Wednesday. For this event Hyrum wore his Mickey Mouse costume again because it was going to be COLD, and outside for part of it so we busted out the costume from last year. It fit him better than last year and this year he's actually going to MEET Mickey so I figured that it would be alright.

Yes he kissed the pavement AGAIN! Off the concrete stairs AGAIN! I wonder if our next one will have a better relationship with the stairs.

Hyrum got the hang of this trick or treating stuff quick and sometimes even said "trick or treat" too. He has been SOOO excited about Halloween this year ever since I pulled out the decorations. He even loved the scary decorations, although I'm sure he had a few nightmares because of them.

When we went into the carnival Hyrum did some pumpkin rolling...

Some fish ponding...

Ring "tossing" ( actually for Hyrum it was more like ring placing!)...


And even a little cat walking...

That was that event. Then two days later (one of those Hyrum didn't see his dad at all) was the Omniture Halloween Horror Horrah ( aka Omniture (an Adobe company) Halloween INSANITY!)

Ok first of all I have a problem. For some reason I always take pictures when I should take a video and I always take videos when I should take pictures. One of these years I'm going to get it right but in the meantime this doesn't do it justice (as if ANYTHING can)

Hyrum wore his new hand me down Blue's Clues "Blue" costume. He was BEYOND excited to wear it because Papa brought him Blue's Clues DVD's and he watched it altogether TOO MUCH.

He kept running around saying "BA BOW!" I of course not being able to think of another costume was "Steve" it was pretty lack luster and I don't think many people got it but at least I knew what I was.

At Omniture ( an Adobe company) they had Looney Tune sections...





Star Wars sections...

This is one of the times when I should have taken a video rather than pictures. They had a green screen set up so you could watch yourselves lightsaber fight up on the big screen they had set up in a conference room. Hyrum lightsaber fights with anyone and everyone who will with him all the time. He fights with paper towel rolls, wrapping paper rolls, spoons, pens even down to just his hands but when he saw himself on the screen with Star Wars characters...he was awestruck.

He didn't show up very good on the screen because he was wearing just the right shade of blue so you could really only see his face.

He even got to meet Darth Vader...he wasn't sure what to think of that or the rest of them...

As you can see there was plenty of fog makers in the area. :)

They also had a Flintstone section

Stimpsons section

A Care Bear section

A Peter Pan section

"flying" over London


A Pac Man section



And of course they saved the best section for last...the section that Derek and my dad worked on...The Star Trek: The Next Generation section.

It all started with a crashed shuttle on an alien planet...

This was WAY too long in coming! So many people have said how much my dad looks like Capt. Jean Luc Picard. It was so fun to really make him look like him. I should have gotten pictures of him checking himself out in the mirror. I really think he liked it too. :)

Anyway as you enter the shuttle (Derek was the shuttle team lead) you are asked to put on some "gamma ray protection eyewear" ( which were chromadepth glasses ) and they gave everything a 3D quality. It was really cool and again none of this does it justice.






This isn't even pictures of everything we saw when we were there. Once again it was amazing and Hyrum left with a sufficient sugar rush.
video

The next day was the actual day. We only planned to go to 4 or 5 houses but as soon as we got Hyrum into his Mickey Mouse costume again and put a pumpkin in his hand he was ready to get more candy.


We'd go to one house and coach him to say "Trick or Treat" and "Thank you" and "Happy Halloween" as soon as we got off the porch he was pointing at the next house saying "MORE CANDY!" The next thing we knew we were half way around the neighborhood.

At one house we were so hovering in our coaching that the home owner seemed convinced we were training a "Stepford child" we laid off a bit more after that and he did it all on his own without any coaching by the end. He loved it all and we all had the time of our lives as well.