Sunday, November 29, 2009

I Won Nanowrimo!

I don't know if anyone noticed that I sort of disappeared during November, but the reason was that it was National Novel Writing Month (seems like it was just that time last year too...) so in addition to a thousand other things that have been going on, I took this challenge on as well. Glutton for punishment! However, the stress of an additional burden did pay off because... I WON! I finished my second fifty-thousand word novel in less than 30 days. While I would never even let anyone read this one and know the story isn't really over, I do feel a little proud. :)

The book I was writing is called Elder Adventurers (working title) and briefly, its about how magic is in danger of extinction due to a now-peaceful political system and the dying off of almost all magic users who chose not to take on apprentices and pass down their knowledge. Basically all that's left is a few stragglers, who get rounded up by one busy-body old fogie who just can't give up on life without meddling in the world one last time. Well, that's what its theoretically about, anyway. So, it's done enough for me, maybe I'll come back to it later but with all the other stuff I put off to write, I'll have my hands full for a while yet! Maybe I'll even post a few blog entries in the next few days. :)

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

The Symphony of Science

John Boswell created this amazing project called the Symphony of Science that if you haven't seen already, you must. It's delicious, addictive, intelligent, beautiful and haunting. Here is his second piece, "We Are All Connected".

If you like this, his website is and you can view this video and his first one as well. Be careful though, this stuff is highly addictive - you've been warned.

Sunday, November 8, 2009

Trick or Treat!

This year was Bobo's second time Trick-or-Treating. Last year I had to carry him up to each house to get the candy, but this year he was loving running from door to door to do it himself! He loves candy, so he was ecstatic to grab a piece (or three) or take those that were handed to him. He usually remembered to say 'tick o tweet' and 'tank ooo'. So cute!

Getting his bag all prepared to hold tons of candy, and having Dracula help him get his shoes on.

It was the PERFECT night for Trick-or-Treating. The forecast was for massive rain and freezing tempatures, but we started early and it was warm, gorgeous, slightly windy which carried the scent of a late autumn night on the breeze, leaves rushing by every which way making things a little spooky, and a gorgeous sunset. And if that wasn't enough to set the atmosphere, there was a basically full moon looming over head! I cannot remember such a fantastic Halloween night in my many years on the earth! :)

Bobo was so good, he stayed in his carriage (mostly) between houses, then would jump right out to run up to the door and get his treats. He kept saying 'nodda house, nodda house' because he wanted to keep going! Not to mention his little cow ears and tail flopped up and down as he ran, and he looked incredibly adorable. Everyone who saw him or passed by remarked on how cute his costume looked!

And this is how I spent half of the night... pulling up my socks which kept slipping down in my boots! Notice they are very festive... but unfortunately also very slippery. Next year I will wear sensible socks!

This is the last house we went to on the way back... every year for every holiday they go all out crazy with lights and decorations... you should see Christmas! Not to mention they have always given out *full sized* candy bars. Yum!

The weather stayed awesome almost the whole time... it sprinkled for 5 minutes halfway through, but then as we were walking home it started to pour. We almost made it back before the deluge, but at least Arin had his waterproof carriage!

And here we are back at home checking out the stash... not a bad haul for a two-year old! I put it all in a plastic pumpkin (after we ate a ton of it on Halloween night) and he's still got plenty left to have a candy or two a day. Mmmm.

Hope everyone had as fun a Halloween as we did! Can't wait until next year.

Our Pumpkin Family

After last-minute pre-Halloween pumpkin picking (and a visit to the grocery store) here is the happy pumpkin family we ended up with.

The second to smallest rotted thanks to a fingernail gouge, the second-to-biggest we ate, the largest is STILL waiting to be made into a jack-o-lantern and the other two now reside on the mantle with other harvesty stuff... and umm, some Christmas stuff that is finding its way out! :)

The Earth in Autumn

Saturday, November 7, 2009

In the Autumn Leaves

Mommy and Bobo

Just saying 'Hi' before we head out to the pumpkin patch!

And of course, here's one of Bobo practicing dressing up for Halloween... this is his 'Cowboy' look:

Sunday Best

Doesn't he look so handsome and grown up when he gets dressed nicely? Now, if only all his pants weren't too big or too small... then the outfit would really look nice! And ignore the sneakers. :)

We got a pumpkin on the way home... well, two actually. The tinier one Bobo punctured with his nail and has since rotted, but this one is still going strong on the mantle!

Dinner in a Pumpkin

I love autumn and Halloween and usually we like to go all-out for the season, but this year I am so overwhelmed with my jam-packed schedule that we didn't get to do as much fun stuff as usual. So, I decided to try some random new traditions... like dinner in a pumpkin! Tater Tot Casserole is a big hit in my house, and this is similar, so it also went over well. Plus it looks adorable. I'll definitely be making this again year after year!

Recipe -

1 small to medium Pumpkin
1 Chopped onion
2 Tbs Oil
1-2 lbs Ground Turkey
2 TB Soy Sauce
2-3 TB Brown Sugar
1 Can Cream of Chicken Soup
1- 1.5 Cup Cooked Rice (or Cooked potatoes)
Ketchup to taste

Cut off top of pumpkin, clean out seeds and pulp, and optionally make a face with permanent marker on pumpkin.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees. In a large skillet saute onions in oil until tender. Add meat and salt to taste. Brown the turkey (and I like to add a fair bit of cracker crumbs to soak up the juices instead of draining). Add soy sauce, brown sugar, and soup; simmer 10 min, stirring occasionally. Add cooked rice or potatoes, add ketchup to taste. Spoon mixture into pumpkin. You can also add water chestnuts, mushrooms, etc... whatever you like to put in your casseroles. Place lid back on and set whole pumpkin on baking sheet.
Bake for 1 hour or until warm all the way through.

The bottom will be a bit squidgy so you might have to scoop it out and serve it from the stove, but if you can get it onto the table that's more festive. Also, don't be shy about scraping the tender pumpkin flesh out into the bowl with all the other stuff... it tastes really good all mixed in together!

And then when you're all done you can peel the pumpkin and use what's left of it for pumpkin soup or bread or pancakes... mmm!

This can't be Normal...

Okay, so check out this amazingly happy, exuberantly joyful little Bobo and try to imagine what has him in a state of such unabashed glee:

Now, is THIS what you were imagining? Because it's one thing that Bobo finds to be hilarious fun:

Yeah... I just don't know. Let's just say that this picture is one of a series... and this is NOT the most silly/questionable/weird. :) I guess when someone is washing dishes they just present way too tempting of a target to be missed, eh?

Monday, November 2, 2009

Apple - Pumpkin

I guess because we picked a few apples on our way down to the pumpkin patch, Bobo got a little confused...


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