Family photo shoot

We got a super late start on our photos for the Christmas card this year.  We decided to work with a new photographer, but she didn’t have availability until November.  And then when Auden got strep throat, we had to delay even further. Who knows if we’ll even be able to pull Christmas cards off in time!  But I do like the tradition of capturing the boys every year – they just change so fast!  And this year they were really cooperative and patient both with us and with the photographer.  Here are a few of my photos … we look forward to sharing the family pictures in our Christmas card very, very soon!



Auden took this one of me while he was waiting for his turn.  Nice – best picture of me in awhile!  And Wynn took a few good ones of me, too …

Version 2

After being patient indoors, the boys were happy to be outside playing in the snow!



Here is a view of the Botanic Gardens as we made our way to a spot for outdoor photos:


And the Japanese Gardens, which served as a backdrop for our last outdoor pictures (before it became too cold to do more!)



Ready for Halloween!

I love how the boy’s Halloween costumes reflect their current interests!  This year Auden is dressing as Harry Potter (he read the first three books over the summer):


And Wynn is a Pokemon (Charzard, the evolved form of Charmander, if you want to be specific):


His head is a little big for the hat / face that comes with the costume, so I bought him this:

He enjoys it so much he’s been wearing it around the house.

Here they are together:


They are both so big, but Wynn has just been through a growth spurt, and Auden is preparing to shoot up again too.

Although I’ve never been that into Halloween, Stephanie is REALLY into it, and the boys are too.  Our house has been decorated for a few weeks already, and it’s been a festive way to start the Fall.



After all that, I think the treat-or-treating may end up being anti-climatic.  :)

Kiwi & Tinker Crates

At the beginning of the summer, I ordered a three month subscription to Kiwi Crate for Wynn, and to Tinker Crate for Auden.  I figured if it was too hot to go outside, they would have a fun project to do!  But somehow the summer months just flew by, and the crates sat in our hall closet collecting dust.

For whatever reason, I pulled them out a few weekends ago, and the boys have been tearing through them!  Auden made a hand-crank flashlight (including some pretty intricate circuitry), and he is currently working on a trebuchet.


He also made a bottle rocket that takes off when you combine baking soda, citric acid, and water together. That was a messy and fun one that Auden finished outside last weekend with the help of his assistant:

OriginalPhoto-466288836.380607Wynn and I built a little Chinese lantern light decorated as a fish, and yesterday while Auden had a playdate, he worked on a treasure chest and an accompanying map that he had Auden do afterwards.  They found 8 Hershey’s kisses to share!



It has been a cute and fun way to do something that doesn’t involve screen time, so when it came up for renewal we decided we’re going to do it again.  The kids recognize the packaging when it comes to the house now, and we can’t wait to see what’s next!


Definitely feeling my age these days – more the auto-immune condition than the actual age, I suspect.  We had a quiet celebration with our friends Betsy and Chris at their place (we brought out own food).  It was good to be out and be social!


I don’t mind turning 46, or even that it rounds up to 50.  I am looking forward to a time when Stephanie and I aren’t so worried about our health, though …


Tonight when I came home from work, the boys were busy in the basement.  So busy that they didn’t even come up to say ‘hi’ to me, so I finally got petulant and asked ‘where are my hello kisses?!’.

It turns out that they were down in the basement, deeply engrossed in creating a new game called Adventureland.  Auden started making up the game in his head yesterday, and he drew an elaborate picture that he shared with me:

Megaton in Adventureland

Today after he was done with his homework, Auden took a sheet of our butcher block paper, and cut a giant piece of it.  The ‘scroll’ is the first level of a multi-part game that he is now building with Wynn:


He created a boss called Megaton:


“He has a protective shield that fades when his core is destroyed.  The arms and the laser are very annoying for someone who is trying to attack, but you don’t need to kill them all to kill the boss.  He is made of pure titanium, which makes him very hard to destroy.”

And then they also created characters for themselves and for me.

Here is Auden’s character.  “He has the scythe dropped from Megaton, and in his inventory he has the Megaton Staff.  He also has full darkness armor, which is made from pure darkness bars from the Underworld Lord.  He has golden wings dropped from the Golden Golem, and he is a strong as a titanium megaton giant.”


Wynn’s character is below.  He gave me an elaborate description the first time, so he was unhappy to be asked again!  The best I could get out of him was that “he has the ‘strongest armor ever’, out of ‘alaphantite’.  He is as strong as Okram!”


Like so  many things Wynn makes, it has these elaborate little details that he explained to me.  “The star [at the top on the back] will summon a helper to fight him.  After you kill him, it will drop and hit the ground.  If you catch it he won’t respawn [like the Guide Voodoo Doll in Terraria].  The little pocket halfway down has a Megaton Rifle in it.”


And lastly, here is me.  I got to pick the color of my armor, so of course it’s purple!


I look happy, don’t I?  Of course I do – I’m one lucky mom to have such amazing boys.  I love seeing them bring their ideas to life, blurring the lines between the games on their iPad and the elaborate ones they make up.  And of course I love seeing them play together:


It was tough on me having them so close together in age, but moments like this make it all worthwhile!