We carved jack-o-lanterns tonight!  It's one of those traditions that Bron dislikes and I love.  C'mon, it's Halloween!!!  I just can't get enough of all things spooky and Fall.  Jed and Levi are getting pretty good at scooping out the pumpkin guts, but there's still plenty of hands-on cooperation from us as parents.  You see those spider legs up there?  Yeah, that was me.  And those scary teeth?  All Bron.  Conrad was enamored by the whole process.  Holiday traditions are so fun to experience with kids, but with Conrad it's made even better because all this is brand new stuff to him!  

Jack-o-lantern glow!  Conrad giggled with excitement when he saw these lit up.  Then he cried big crocodile tears when I took him inside to bed.  These first years are the best.

Teddy Goes Flying at Shoshone Falls


Just another gorgeous Idaho October day exploring our local outdoor attractions.  On this particular afternoon, Levi and Conrad joined me down at Shoshone Falls.  I was meeting another photographer friend and her husband down there to check out their old Sigma Art 50mm lens they were selling.  It had been dropped and superficially damaged, but the glass was still as sharp and beautiful as ever.  So of course, this was the little photo shoot that ensued to test out the new lens before actually buying it!  While my friend did a session for some clients, the boys and I wandered around.  We ran into a local acquaintance turned instant friend that day.  She has three boys too and a new interest in photography.  The friendship is obviously inevitable.  We chatted, followed our boys around, and took photos til dinner time was overdue.  

I know I say this over and over again, but I love this community and the people in it.  There's just something extra special about where we live.  We're fortunate to call the Magic Valley home.

And yes, I totally bought the lens.  

Exploring Indian Springs


I know these beautiful warm Fall days are numbered.  So after school one day, we pushed dinner back an hour and played hooky from homework.  We loaded up the car instead and drove to the top of Indian Springs to explore and feel the sun on our faces.  That's simply all we did: walk around, climb rocks, play with sticks, and pretend to have a battle against a most formidable foe.  You know, boy stuff.  And it's wonderful stuff.  I was made for this boy mom gigue.    

A Mid-October Photo Roundup


^^October golden hour taking my breath away.^^
^^Home for the last seven years.^^
^^And the middle child strikes again.  I grabbed the camera because all three of my boys were reading together, but of course I captured THIS.  Haha.^^

It was a weekend of football games, good food, and friends.  September 30th, was also the day of the primary program at church.  I was a proud beaming mama sitting in the audience watching my boys sing their little hearts out with enthusiasm.  Conrad sat next to me on the pew, eating his snack like he was watching the greatest show on earth.  It was hilarious.  I even got to play my violin along with the kids on a couple of songs.  But my personal favorite highlight from the weekend was probably the Saturday morning mountain bike ride date with my true love.  It was an adventure!  We rode a new trail and found some incredible Fall colors.  Totally a highlight reel, but it really doesn't get any better than that.

Conference Weekend South Hills Hike


I can't get enough of the colors right now!  Yesterday was a dream.  After being uplifted by General Conference in the morning, we loaded up into the truck for a drive into the hills.  It was an epic adventure as fog and ice clashed with the bright beautiful colors of Fall. Afterwards, we came home and warmed ourselves up with some hot chocolate and cuddling on the couch to watch one of my season favorites: Hocus Pocus.  I don't think a Fall day can get much better than that.

May the Force Be With You


Per request: a light saber fight. I really should have been sleeping!  May your biggest dreams and aspirations come true, boys!  (Jed and Levi + their best friends, the Horsley boys.)

Apples from the Backyard Tree + Apple Pie


Just flipping out here a little bit and doing a happy dance.  I've been featured by National Geographic!!!  What?!  Week.  Made.  And Jed is thrilled too; his hand is now famous.

We made apple pie using apples from our backyard tree.  I couldn't help a particular sweet memory of our dear friend Anna from surfacing.  She taught me how to make apple pie in our little duplex kitchen in upstate New York 9 Falls ago.  Jed was a baby, asleep upstairs while we worked into the evening -- snitching bites of apple with sugar, chatting and laughing.  Those were some good days!  Anna is one of the warmest most caring souls on the planet and we miss her.

A Little Behind the Scenes of Family Life


Today was one of those terrible days with the kids.  It began with good intentions and then unraveled quickly as the boys fought, whined, and made ridiculous demands of my time and energy. It was one of those days where I just wanted to get in the car and run away!  (But I didn't.)  Instead, when their dad arrived home, he threatened to cancel Halloween.  We had a family meeting and then went out for dinner and the boys got their hair cut.  We even did a little shopping!  The night went so smoothly.

When we arrived home, Jed said, "I'm glad I changed my attitude."

"Me too, Bud!  That was such a nice night out.  What do you think made the difference?"

"I stopped thinking about me and started thinking about other people in our family."


My kids are capable of being responsible and helpful and kind. I hope tomorrow goes MUCH better.

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