Kimball Elizabeth Felton
November 8-11, 2001
This time of year, most of us find ourselves in the throws of necessary traditions. Whether it's over eating, over spending (black Friday of course), or over traveling, our obsession for customary memory making runs deep.
For us, November isn't just about a good meal, good company, and great times. Our traditions include a little more than our American feast. We celebrate the life of our 3rd baby girl, Kimball Elizabeth. We write her a message and put them inside a helium balloon, then send them to heaven. The girls always say the sweetest things, like I miss your little fingers, and do you think about me? We finish our night with dinner out, as a family.
There is nothing I am more grateful for than the atonement. I often envision the day we are all home together again. The words most often recalled, "till we meet..."
We enjoyed a very warm and sunny visit to the farm this year. We are accustomed to bleak (meaning dead) scenery and chilly weather. This was definitely a turn for the better. The farm offered a ginormous corn maze, pumpkin picking, a haunted house, and many "carny" like rides. We passed on the latter. The maze took an hour and a half and the haunted house was all together another story. Kennedy was nervous, but buckled down and did it in true teenager style, Reagan was scared to death, Abby went multiple times and didn't miss a single thing - turned around a couple times because she thought she missed a corner or two.
Yes, Olivia's hair does resemble Lemony Snicketts.
Abby and her friend Jenna discussing the route we should take.
This was the year of recycled costumes. After 11 years of costume hunting, sewing, buying, and reconditioning I decided it was time to be more resourceful. We told the girls they could be anything they wanted, just as long as we had what they wanted...And what a might fine job they did! Kennedy combined her everyday with costume bid "finds" and made a far too pretty crazy witch. Reagan donned the good old dead bride bit, then thoroughly enjoyed doing her own make-up. Abby wore Belle again (same as last year), and I say again because it has been worn to the grocery store, gym, preschool, park, and yes to bed - but only on one occasion. Livy - not pictured due to melt down in the driveway at the moment, was a blue ice princess, the only thing she would agree to wear.
What a trick-or-treating bunch! we got together with three of our friends to hit the streets. We ate pizza together then began the assualt. After three hours and only 5 kids remaining, it started to sprinkle, so the moms called it a night. Of course the bags were bulging and sick bellies followed so the night was considered a success!
I know some of you were worried we might not hold the annual Halloween party, but have no fear, the night went off without a hitch. Being the "newbees" and all, I must admit, I was a little nervous about it myself. However, I dawned my super girl costume and went to work. Our invites went way of Ms. Martha herself - the baked clay fingers on a bed of moss, placed in a sleek black box, embossed with "Dont forget" in silver. With help from my ever faithful mom and dad, they here hand-(enjoy the pun) delivered to every home. The guests arrived on time and fully dressed (no party pooper this year!) in creatively clad costumes! We must say, some of the best attire yet! Below you will find (without names by request) some of the best:
Joe the Plumber and his preggers nurse
Richard Simmons (who maintained the integrity of his character through frequent lunges and jumping jacks) and the eagle poaching wife
Miss LD Bug and Batman (who never removed his mask, you have to enjoy the commitment)
The 80's couple
Wilma and Fred Flinstone
My personal favorite: The Joker
Usher and his biggest fan (inside joke far too complicated to share, just know it took courage and creativity to pull it off)
Have you every seen a more diverse bishopric?
NO - we have not recently shrunk in stature, they are truly living (and once living) trees. This trunk was carved out in the early 40's in order to drive a car through (money-making scheme).
Grandma and Papa came to visit so Jon and I could spend the weekend in Napa Valley. Of course it was much too short and we all had grandparent withdrawls for days, but the time we did have together was priceless. The weekend before they left we spent the afternoon in the Redwood Forest. It was unbelievable. The temperature was perfect, and the walk not too long. They collected pinecones, and oohed and aaahhed over every tree. You would think they should all look the same, but each one was a little different and had something worth commenting about. Some had merged together eventually forming one tree from 2-3, some were de-barked (for commercialism in the '40's), and some had grown into shapes that formed an object. The girls' fav was the one large enough to hide in between the twists of the trunk.
As a tradition, we only have friend birthdays on the even year. To encourage some new friendship we bent the rules and let Abby have a party this year. She wanted a Halloween party so we waited until the second Saturday in October to enjoy the festivities. She described a scary cake (much better in her mind) and I did my best to create it. Her favorite part was "her scary name and ginormous chocolate haunted house."
She invited 5 friends from school and 3 from her primary class. This is one of her "bester friends", Connor R.
Jenna and Abby
Getting ready to blow out the candles.
This is her bestest friend that's a boy (if you couldn't tell). His name is Collin and she says all the time, "I just love his cute little eyes." His mom and I had a good laugh because he got Abby exactly what she wanted (a Belle Barbie and a necklace), we figure they must have talked about it before hand.
We had dinner - mummy dogs, grapes, and cheetos, then made spiders. We did a scavenger hunt in the back yard to find several different things the troll would need before they could cross the bridge (bones, skin, etc..) then we did pin the nose on the pumpkin, pinata, presents, then cake. Ffeewww, glad it's done.
The spider pinata.
We gave Abby a Barbie bike for her birthday. The Dora bike had seen its last days. She was very excited and rides it almost everyday.
What we love about Abby
Her raspy voice
Her long curly hair
Her bubble butt
Her excitement and passion
Her "no fear" attitude (so far...)
How much she misses and loves her relatives
What Abby loves
Playing outside until dark
Kindergarten - "I wish it was always a school day"
Watching TV in the bathtub
Talking on the phone (you regulars know who you are)
Dress ups, make-up, and shiny lip gloss
Moms high heels
Running, running, running
Alone time with mom
Every year the Kindergarten classes put on a teddy bear picnic for the parents. They spend all day preparing for the event. They get to bring their favorite teddy bear, give them a name badge (Furbert), and have a picnic in the play yard.
The kids got a paper lunch box full of healthy snacks. We all ate together and took a few pics. Abby's favorite part was getting to bring a toy to school and taking pictures with Dad.
Left to right, Dr. Altman (BTW, my OB, aaawwkward...), Eric, hospital VP, James, CEO, Jon, soon to rule the world
Recently Jon had the pleasure of completing an all night hike with a couple other hospital execs and Docs from his hospital. It was in Yosemite National Park, (about 1.5 hours from us), on a mountain called Half-Dome. They started around 8:00pm and hiked all night long. They made it to the top in time for the sun rise, then hiked back down. Before the actual event, he was excited and called it a "work" event. After he got home, he called the hardest thing he has ever done. Several people die each year, in an attempt to make it to the top (becuase of dumb mistakes they say...)
This is the most dangerous slope, where you have to climb up/down holding on to cables.