Monday, November 25, 2013

October 2013

October was a packed month! It started with our church welcoming our new pastor, Dwayne Tester and his family, Kim and Austin, to our church, which happened to be our "Friends Day," too. What better way to begin preaching at your new church, right? We had a large crowd, a terrific service, and a delicious dinner afterwards.

We used our season passes to Tweetsie to get into "Ghost Train." When Eric and I were both working at Tweetsie, it was during Ghost Train that we first started dating. It was quite different running around with our 4 kids, helping buckle them on and off the rides, than it was 11 years ago when we were getting all painted up and in our costumes. The kids had a great time, but we stayed away from the Haunted House and Spooky Forest- we were afraid that might be a bit too much for them this year.

We also used our season passes to Dollywood to go to the "Harvest Celebration" there. Jackson and Ansley are now tall enough to where they can ride some of the bigger rides, which made it a little more difficult trying to keep the little girls satisfied. Usually we have my parents or sisters with us that could help entertain the little girls, but this trip it was just the 6 of us. Elsie and Vada were great though, and didn't complain about having to wait on big brother or sister at all. We did take them down to the kiddie area and let them play for a long time, just to be fair. :)
It was the first time that we took Jackson and Ansley on the big swings (I always forget about this ride!) and Jackson LOVED it. He laughed and laughed the entire ride, and had me laughing, too.

Abigail and Amelia came up to stay at Mamaw and Papaw's for a weekend while Tiffany and Mark were out of town, so we enjoyed spending lots of play time with the girls. We took them to see all of the scarecrows on Main Street, and their favorites were the Little Mermaid one, and the Duck Dynasty one.
Vada has learned this month how to climb onto her chair, then her high chair and then onto the top of the table. The girl is definitely a climber, and is really keeping me on my toes these days.

While Jackson and Ansley are at school, and when Vada Belle naps, I get to spend some one-on-one time with little Elsie. She is so much fun and has turned into the most hugging, loving 3 year old, and is all of a sudden a huge mommy's girl. I never imagined our sassy little toddler would be this loving- but she still has lots of that sass left in her! 
"Mommy- I don't want to wear this shirt. I look weird!"  ~Elsie

The 21st of this month was "watch day" at Ansley's dance class. She is still loving ballet and tap, and we are looking forward to watching her dance in The Nutcracker next month. Her class is adorable, and every one of those girls did a great job at practice!

Near the end of the month, a group from our church, went to Stickley Farms. There we did a hay ride, the kids bounced on the jump pillow, some from our group went ziplining, and then we all went through the corn maze. 

We also had our family's fall festival, dressed up for Halloween, took some fall pictures, celebrated friends and family members birthdays, and managed through the every day hustle and bustle of life. What a beautiful life it is!

Friday, November 15, 2013

Phipps Fall Festival 2013

The last couple of years my parents have had a gathering of family and friends at their house to make some apple butter, apple cider, and have a huge pot luck, which includes several dishes cooked over the outdoor cooking fire pit. It was a gorgeous and perfect fall day, and I think everyone that came had a great time. Everything was decorated beautifully and the food was delicious! 

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Halloween 2013

As everyone probably knows by now, our family loves to do themes for Halloween (as you can see here and here). I honestly thought that last year would be our last year because the kids would want to be doing their own thing, but when we were on a hike while camping in September the kids started talking about what they wanted to be for Halloween. They immediately started trying to think of a theme, without me even influencing them! I'm not even sure who brought up doing a Peter Pan theme, but the kids took it and ran with it. So, here we are: Peter Pan, Captain Hook, Wendy Darling, Tinkerbell, Tiger Lily and one of the mermaids from the movie:

The kids have watched Peter Pan only about a hundred plus times (which I think is why they choose that movie to dress up like), so they kept saying in the weeks prior to Halloween what each one of us had to say and do. Dad was to say, "Blast the Peter Pan" (in an English accent of course), Ansley would wave and say "Hello Peter," Jackson would call dad a "codfish" and Elsie would have to pull my hair, but over and over again she would say "I promise I won't pull it hard, mommy." On Halloween Elsie told me repeatedly that daddy really didn't have to stick Vada Belle's feet in the water- ha! Jackson especially loved having a sword fight with "Captian Hook" while using his dagger. 

We went to several churches trunk and treats where the kids got so much candy.  We hung out at our church for a little while where we ate and the kids got even more candy.

We then went to the mall, where we got to at 6:58 only to find out they stopped doing trick or treating there at 7:00, but it was ok and the kids didn't mind because we got to meet up with Caleb and Lyla and see them all dressed up. 

Happy Halloween!