Since my husband is a tax accountant, the first half of October is usually pretty quiet for us, in terms of extra-curricular activities. For instance, the kids got Columbus Day off of school, but it was two days before the big deadline (October 15) for Michael, so we ended up celebrating the day off by cleaning house in the morning then meeting friends at a park on an exceptionally beautiful fall day. It was great, actually, just pretty low-key.

Really, the weather this fall was pretty unbelievable until a couple weeks ago. Now it is very believable. Though today it hasn't rained yet and I even went outside and did some yard tidying. And stuck a shovel through an underground sprinkler hose. I was digging some manure into the soil where I hope to plant squash next year. They're going to pretty expensive squash. Assuming they grow at all. Which is a big assumption, given my gardening history! ALTHOUGH, we did end up with about 13 squash from an acorn squash we planted in an unused garden bed this year - I planted it last in the season and it grew great guns and yielded 13 squash from one plant! The other squash I planted were anemic looking and maybe managed 2 full grown fruits per plant. I think it was the soil, thus the manure, and thus the soon-to-be expensive irrigation hose repair.

Anyhoo... After October 15, it got to be pretty eventful! Michael and I went on our first out-of-town-without-the-kids trip last weekend! My parents came down and watched the four younger kids, Judah stayed at my in-laws' for the weekend, and I flew to Las Vegas to meet Michael after a training conference he had attended. A good time was had by all! Michael and I had a lot of fun, seeing the sights, eating out, and walking a lot (like, 37,000 steps on Saturday!). We saw Ka by Cirque de Soleil, rode in a gondola, went on the Highroller, ate brunch at the restaurant in the "the Eiffel Tower" and went through what felt like dozens of little, extremely expensive shops, buying nothing. The best part was spending time together "as a couple" without the normal duties of everyday life with kids, house, work, etc. I'd love to do that again!

Selfie in front of The Mirage (we didn't stay here, we stayed at the MGM Signature)

On the Highroller (huge ferris wheel) with The Strip in the background

But Las Vegas really is Sin City, especially after the sun goes down. We have no interest in drinking or gambling. So as I flew away I said goodbye to The Strip - for good! There are still lots of places I've never been!

Last night was Reformation Day, popularly known as Halloween. *grin* I took the kids trick-or-treating in downtown Oregon City in the late afternoon, then our Community Group held a Reformation Night party at our house. It was a busy day, what with the kids wearing costumes to school, cleaning up the house for company, making party food and then leaving the house for two hours before the actual party! But it was a good time! Just the right size, I think. We had two booth-like activities, such as our church usually has at the annual Reformation Night celebration (actually, we borrowed the church's supplies, as the event wasn't held this year), which provided the kids with something to do until I couldn't handle the noise anymore and sent them upstairs to watch The Incredibles in the guest-room. :-)

"Happy Reformation Day!"

Rapunzel, Rapunzel, let down your long hair!
Monica counted 19 Elsas at the trick-or-treating event. Not quite so many Rapunzels, of course, but still, Disney is clearly making a fortune on it's Princess empire this year.

Elena refused to wear her bumblebee costume. Probably would've been kind of chilly anyway.

Monica got to hold the "school baby" Masato. Obviously, she was thrilled. 


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