A Little of This and That in October

Nov 17, 2017

You know I'm not as enamored with October as the rest of the world seems to be, but even I have to admit that we had a lovely, beautiful month. Some highlights were . . .

Driving . . . the Alpine Loop. The last time I remember driving this mountain loop in the fall was before we had kids, but now I think it needs to be a new tradition. Seriously, it was jaw droppingly gorgeous. Nature amazes me.

Watching . . . General Conference. Our kids managed to let Mike and me listen to about half the talks, and I've been relistening in the weeks since. Two of my favorite talks are "Turn on Your Light" by Sharon Eubank and "The Eternal Everyday" by Quentin L. Cook.

Hiking . . . Grandeur Peak. This actually happened at the end of September, and I can't believe I forgot to write about it in my September recap because it was kind of a big deal. We can see this mountain from our house, and so it was one of the boys' summer goals to hike to the top of it (because how cool is that to look at the same mountain every day and know that you've been at the very top?). They had to wait for the summer heat to retreat, and then they settled on a Friday when Mike had the day off work and the boys didn't have school. I kept Ian and Clark at home, but the rest of the boys went, and they happened to go on a day when they could be joined by a few cousins, a couple of aunts, and an uncle. They completed the entire hike but only just. Maxwell got altitude sickness and was pretty miserable for the majority of the hike and then spent the rest of the day in bed or on the couch. It was kind of like he had the flu. Poor kid.

Winning . . . the Reflections contest in the photography category. The funny thing about the above hike is that Max had been planning to take a photo from the mountain that he could then use for the school Reflections contest. But by the time he reached the top, he was deep in the throes of altitude sickness. His head hurt, his legs were weak, and the last thing he wanted to do was take a picture. But Mike got it pointed in the right direction and then had him come push the button, all while Max was whining and complaining and crying. And then, his photo won. Personally, I think it had more to do with his description than the actual photo because he wrote about all he had to overcome in order to take it.

Taking . . . a knitting class. One of my goals this year was to take a knitting class. I bought a Craftsy class on stranded knitting a few months ago, but I kept thinking about how much fun it would be to take a class at my local yarn store also. So when a class came up to learn how to make a pair of colorwork mittens, I jumped on it. Even better, one of my good friends took the class with me. Those two evenings were an absolute delight. I was surrounded by beautiful yarn and other knitters doing an activity that I love and improving my skills. Plus, I was so happy to become friends with the instructor. I had been following her on Instagram for several months, but she was even nicer in real life. Here's the thing I realized though after completing the class: I loved it for the camaraderie and conversations and trouble shooting, but I think I actually prefer learning from a video because I can watch it as many times as I need to and not feel self-conscious. So what I really need is a knitting group. But first, I need to find other friends who knit.

Visiting . . . the pumpkin patch. Our kids loved searching for just the right pumpkin, running through the corn maze, rolling around in the corn bin, and going down the long slide. I think we picked the perfect day weather-wise for it. Last year, we went to Chick-fil-a after going to the pumpkin patch, and so this year, everyone assumed we'd do the same thing. So we did. I guess it's kind of a tradition now.

Losing . . . two teeth in ten minutes. Aaron finally, finally lost his two front teeth. They were so worn down, there was hardly any tooth left to lose, but he still managed it--first one, and then, a few minutes later, the other one. At nine years old and in the fourth grade, he's the last one in his class to lose his front teeth, so I think he's glad to finally join the ranks. (Maxwell seems to be following in Aaron's footsteps since he has yet to lose his first tooth.)

Practicing . . . the piano. I've been getting all of my piano students ready for my annual recital, and I always like to play a piece as well. This year, I chose to play Chopin's minute waltz, and it's been so fun to have a reason to sit down and practice, (However, my rendition takes considerably longer than one minute to play.)

Going . . . to This is the Place park. Our friends have a pass that allowed us to get in too, so we went with them. We probably picked the craziest day to go because not only was it fall break (which we knew), but it was also Little Haunts (an annual Halloween event which we didn't know about). Luckily, most people were there for the Halloween activities, so we were able to avoid most of the crowds doing the things no one else was interested in. I think once our zoo membership expires, I'm going to get a membership at This is the Place because my kids loved it so much, and we didn't even get to do half of the activities.

Walking . . . through the zoo. But in the meantime, we're using our zoo pass and loving it.

Volunteering . . . in the boys' classrooms. My goal is to help in Aaron's and Maxwell's classrooms once a month, but in October, I was able to help in Bradley's as well. I love seeing what they're working on and learning and how their teachers interact with them.

Attending . . . Homecoming Spectacular at BYU. Kristin Chenoweth was the guest performer, and she meshed so well with BYU's performing groups. She had some stunning solos, and she was just so complimentary to BYU and its professors and students that I couldn't help but love her. After the performance, we walked around campus a bit, and I basked in all the good memories I have from my time there.

Celebrating . . . Mike's weight loss victory. He's been in a weight loss competition with his friend at work for the past three months. When they started, they decided that the reward (for both of them) would be going out to a nice restaurant at the end of it. The catch was that the loser would have to foot (most of) the bill. Oh, and both wives were invited as well, which suited me just fine. Mike ended up winning (he's nothing if not competitive), so it was not only delicious but inexpensive (and dark--the lighting was perfect for ambiance but not photos).

Dressing . . .up as pirates. Our neighborhood did an adult progressive dinner, and each house had a theme. Everyone rotated to each house, but you dressed up according to which house you'd been assigned in the planning stages. We were in the pirate group, and I was happy to get to resurrect our costumes from a few years ago. (And even though it was only for adults, Ian got to come too because babies don't count as kids, right?)

Taking . . . family pictures. Always an ordeal, but thanks to Mike's talented sister, it was a very pleasant one. And she got some great shots.

Jumping . . . in the leaves, painting and carving pumpkins, and going trick-or-treating. All of the things that make October, October.

How was your October? I'm still interested in hearing about it even though we're more than halfway through November. :-)


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