Planting Bulbs

The boys and I planted over 100 bulbs this afternoon. We had a great system. Andrew and Benj dug the holes, & I filled them with bulbs. Fast work even with baby bulb hijacking and other course corrections. Fingers crossed for a colorful spring.

What we planted:
50 Narcissus yellow trumpets
6 Globemaster Alliums - these are the BIG ones, bigger than a softball!
4 Fritillaria - these are a orangey tropical looking flower.
12 Ice Cream Tulips
10 Merlot Tulips
40 purple & white alliums - golf ball size flowers
6 Alliums - medium sized

Shot with my Hipstamatic for iPhone

Welcome October

I love to decorate for Halloween in October. This year I decided to add two pumpkin topiary to the front porch utilizing the flower pots from the summer. The boys helped pick out the right sized pumpkins and then we stacked and fixed them together. Then I applied some of Stampin' Up! seasonal Decor Elements to the pumpkins. After Halloween I can remove the spiders and still keep the pumpkins for November.

I thought I'd go with a snake and spider theme this year. I like the Spiders crawling up the pumpkins, they are kinda creepy. I also found some larger spiders at the dollar store to hang above the pumpkins. They are attached to wire and they sway nicely with the wind.

Some of you may remember the snake wreath I made from last year. I touched up the paint on the wreath an hung up the creepy thing and then topped off the door with another Halloween decor piece applied to the door. We had our carpets cleaned the other day and the carpet cleaner guys really liked the wreath and so I'm considering that piece of decor a WIN.

I couldn't resist adding the crow silhouette to the bottom of the double garage door. It's a small detail and at first glance looks pretty real. I do a double take every morning and a few neighbors have as well. The dogs in the neighborhood are also fascinated with this addition. I might have to remove it!

Inside I've kept it fairly simple with pumpkins in jars and dishes.

We are loving this fall weather and now that it's not so hot spending much time outdoors. Happy fall!

Nicholas 15 month - milestones

Nicholas had his 15 month check up this morning. All is really well and he is growing nicely. He had two shots today and now all vaccinations are up to date.

Here are his stats - we've got a big boy!
28.6 lbs = 89 percentile
32.28 length = 83 percentile
19.3 inches head circumference = 92 percentile

Milestones (last 3 months):
Food: Nicholas no longer takes a bottle. He can and will eat almost anything you put in front of him. Even if it's not edible. Crayons, dirt, nerf bullets, and dog food are among his secret pleasures. He knows these items are off limits for eating yet somehow I still find them in his mouth. Speaking of chompers, Nicholas has been teething for the last month. His first set of molars are making an appearance. He has almost 12 teeth.

Words: Everyday it seems he is learning a new word or two. When prompted with "ready, set" Nicholas will yell "go". Here are a few of his new words that we can understand; yellow, moo, book, out, hot, go, more, one, up, whoa, and lots of grunts and UH, UH, UH for things he can't say. Non verbally he can point for items he wants and go to the door for outside. Some of the inside doors he can open on his own as well as turn on the bath water and lights. He rubs his hands together like he is washing them after I change his bottom. He knows the drill!

Motion: Nicholas loves to jump. He jumps on command, jumps on the trampoline, jumps in the pool and tries to jump off the couch, bed or coffee table. He actually gets a couple inches of air. Which leads me to climbing... He can climb really well. He climbs the stairs, the ladder to his slide, climbs onto the couch and coffee table. He is a daredevil and attempts to climb most things. He is also quite the dancer. He has his own set of moves and stops dancing whenever I pull the camera out so I never seem to catch these precious moments.

Body recognition: He is very aware of his body and is starting to point out various body parts on command. He knows belly, nose, eyes and toes really well. Patting his belly is his favorite.

Attitude: Generally he is mellow and very happy. Sometimes he wakes up grumpy in the morning and says "no, no" if the older boys come too close. He laughs if everyone else is laughing even though he doesn't understand what may be funny. He is starting to through tantrums if he doesn't get what he wants. These tantrums involve laying on the floor or putting his head down, real tears and stop the second he gets what he wants. We are doing our best to ignore them. He loves his big brothers and really wants to be doing whatever they are doing. Wresting, riding bikes, swimming, watering the flowers, playing ball, reading or playing the computer. The boys are so good with him and really involve him in their activities. I think they enjoy it.

Sleep: Nicholas gets great sleep at night. He heads to bed around 7:30 after a nightly ritual of bath, teeth brushing and a story. He wakes every morning around 6:30-7:00 am. He has weened himself off of two naps much to my dismay. He is taking one long nap from noon to 2:30-3ish. This seems to be enough for him although he does get a bit cranky if the nap is not at least 2 hours.

Random: Somehow we have taught Nicholas to shake his head back and forth when we say Beiber Baby. On command is we say Beiber Baby Nicholas will shakes his head (and hair) back and forth with gusto. It's quite funny. He loves to give a high five and the boys are working on knuckles. He also gets great enjoyment out of telling the dog "no, no". He does this every time he sees Lucy even if she is behaving. Such a mimic. The dog is also a great co conspirator and eats anything Nicholas hands him. Lucy & I still get a lot of open mouth kisses and tonight I got my first ear wet willy. He knew what he was doing and laughed as I yelled gross and recoiled.

I thought I'd share some photos of Nicholas playing with Andrew and Benjamin on the trampoline. He love to jump and wrestle and he soaks in every little thing the older boys do and tries to mimic in someway.

He is so special and everyday we love him more and more!

Backyard... phase 1 is 95% complete

Here it is... The most beautiful back yard. We are so pleased with how everything has turned out. Almost all is complete. We took these photos before the huge snow storm hit. We got over 8 inches... Still left (for after the snow clears) are some minor sprinkler fixes and planting of the 6 carpet roses (the color I choose wasn't readily available to they had to be special ordered). I also still need to replant the perennials I dug up and get some blackberries and raspberries. We may even attempt to get some cold weather vegetables in the ground this week.

The grass looks really good and all of the plants seem healthy and larger than I thought we would get. All of the trees are gorgeous. We only ordered 2" profusion crab trees and ended up getting 3-5 inch caliber trees for the same money. The benefit of buying trees early in the year, I guess. Amazing! One tree is almost 15 feet tall.

The sprinkler system is fancy. We have a drip and soak system through out the garden beds and drip system is set to each bush through out the flower beds. I am hoping our huge summer water bills will decrease drastically, and another extra benefit—water conservation.

I spent all of Nicholas' nap time Saturday weeding the front flower beds. Two down, one more to go. We also moved a mystery bush from the backyard (barberry I think) up to the front flower bed.

The front yard work was really needed. For me and the yard. It was so warm and felt great to sit and the grass and dig around in the dirt.

Sorry for all the photos, I should of narrowed it down a bit but couldn't... now you too can see the yard from all angles and perspectives. :)