Monday, October 31, 2011

6 rolls of gauze + 1 t-shirt + 1 pair grey pants = Superman??

Everyone knows someone who waits to do or finish their Christmas shopping until Christmas Eve.  Friends, I am not one of those people.  I started Christmas shopping a couple of weeks ago, and although I'll likely be shopping well into December, the head start makes for a more relaxed, enjoyable holiday season.  Halloween, it would appear, is a different matter.  We decided to dress C as a mummy, in a costume I'd make.  No problem, right?  It's just a little gauze and thread.  I started on Saturday night.  Last night at 11p I had yet to start the pants, and I gave up.  As luck would have it, my work load was light today, so I took some time off, hit NINE stores (2 Targets, Babies R Us, 2 party supply stores, Baby Gap, Pottery Barn Kids, 2 Walmarts) and finally settled on a Superman t-shirt at Gap with a velcro on cape.  C doesn't even eat candy or understand Halloween, so maybe it shouldn't have mattered so much, but somehow it does.  The kid needs every chance to celebrate all of the silly, crazy, fun aspects of childhood.  I'd go to a hundred more stores to make sure he does just that.  Now I'm just crossing my fingers that he enjoys seeing all of the other kids dressed up (we're going to a safe event at a mall) and doesn't get scared.

the abandoned mummy top
the Gap Superman shirt

Happy Halloween.

TED inspiration

Everyone's aware of the TED talks, right?  Have you heard this one, by Matt Cutts?

Right.  Not long ago I set out to do something, learn something, or experience something new every day.  That didn't last long.  I ran out of ideas or didn't have time to come up with something or just felt uninspired.  So here's the deal.  Maybe I can come up with just twelve things to try and give each one my attention for one month.  November starts tomorrow...first month-long challenge:  increase the art/craft activities C and I do at home.  He's not terribly interested most days, so I'd like to pique his interest without forcing anything on him.  I'm shooting for 3-4 activities per week (he also has art activities daily at day care).  Anyone else up for the challenge?  Tell me what you're planning.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Las Vegas Park Review #13: Mesa Park

Las Vegas Park Review #13:  Mesa Park, 5401 Mesa Park Drive (Summerlin, near Bishop Gorman high school)

- Nice, new playground equipment with two specific age group areas
- A lot of green space (generally used for sports - lacrosse when we were there)
- Lovely playing fields, basketball courts, and tennis courts
- Beautiful views of nearby cliffs
- A real feeling of distance from busy streets and activity. 

- I hesitate to say this, since it's based on just one visit, but there was a group of really snooty moms there that was not interested in playing with, watching, or disciplining their children.  One little kid probably 3 years old or so somehow made it across the large, depressed lacrosse field and up the other side and was about to run into the road before her mom came barrelling over to get her. 

- Noise from construction on nearby houses (but yay for construction resuming!!!) 
- No splash pad

All-in-all, this was a good park.  C had more fun exploring the greenspace than playing on the playground equipment, which was great since the "parents" were lounging there while their kids took over.  We felt completely safe here (at about 2:30 on a weekday afternoon).  I didn't see any security. 

There were restrooms, but we didn't venture inside.  Seemed like a nice building, though. 

Monday, October 17, 2011

Pumpkin Patch, Las Vegas Style

Last weekend, BB, C, and I met one of C's classmates and her parents for some fun at the "pumpkin patch."  As always, Las Vegas does things in its own way.  In eastern Nebraska, when you mention a "pumpkin patch," this is what comes to mind:

All photos from

These pictures are from Vala's Pumpkin Patch, probably the most widely-known - and biggest - pumpkin patch in the area, but there are dozens of similar pumpkin patches around Nebraska (smaller versions of Vala's).  They have corn mazes, hay rack rides, haunted houses, food of all kinds, games, rides, campfires, flowers, produce, pumpkins galore, etc, etc.  It really can be an lengthy event, and so much fun.  Here, it's different.  It was 95 degrees, for starters (I bet those overpriced pumpkins are all cooking inside).  Anyway, I'm not saying the Vegas pumpkin patch isn't fun, but it shouldn't be considered a pumpkin patch.  However, it was pretty great for entertaining an under 2 year old for an hour.  We went to Stu Miller's patch at the corner of Rainbow and Warm Springs.  They were very very nice there.  C and his buddy enjoyed the petting zoo (the parents loved the free hand sanitizer for afterwards!), and played a pumpkin game, but mostly just ran around and had fun.  There are a few rides and bouncy things for older kids (one looked like so much fun - it had a climbing wall and slides), but the parents were too old and the kids too young).  Anyway, once I shed my idyllic notion of a pumpkin patch, I had a great time.  Besides, it's kind of nice to not have to worry about mud, bugs, or bundling up the kids.  So go to the "pumpkin patch," eat cotton candy, pet goats, jump on a bouncy, and enjoy autumn, however it comes. 

Friday, October 14, 2011

Bite of Las Vegas 2011 Schedule

Main Stage

10:30 a - 100 Monkeys
12:00 p - Colbie Caillat
1:30 p - Imagine Dragons
3:00 p - The Cab
4:30 p - Michelle Branch
6:15 p - Mat Kearney
8:00 p - OAR

Restaurant List
Develop your plan of attack people!!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Fall To-Do List

- visit a pumpkin patch
- drain the water heater
- get the air conditioner serviced (or should we do this in the spring?)
- bake something for the nice neighbor and some of B's co-workers
- go on a nature hike, collecting pretty leaves, pine cones, and acorns if there are any
- host a football/poker/dart night and serve chili and focaccia
- donate winter clothes to area charities
- annual donation to the NSPCA in H's honor
- start Christmas shopping
- can homemade applesauce
- bake apples
- plant some cool weather loving flowers
- C's first viewing of "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown"
- hike somewhere leaves are changing
- can homemade pasta sauce while I still have fresh summer tomatoes
- take a picture for holiday cards
- attend a local high school football game
- bake bread with C