Family Pictures and Thanksgiving

It's never easy to get the whole family excited about taking family pictures! It adds a whole new layer of difficulty when you decide to take the pictures on your own, with a tripod and self timer!

This year's family picture saga ended up taking two separate days of trying to get the right shots! The first day we went out to a really beautiful farm to take our pictures. The sun was a little too bright, and Lucy was absolutely losing it. She refused to stand up on her own and begged to be held. She ended up crying in ever single shot we took. It turned out that she actually had a fever, and just wasn't feeling well.

So, determined as I am, I made the family get dressed up all over again on another day to try again for family photos! Luckily, things worked out better the second time around. We decided that sitting down photos might be easier with the whole not wanting to stand situation. It definitely helped. The pictures worked out and we had some cute photos to put on Christmas cards!

Around the same time that we took our family photos, was Thanksgiving. Another great holiday with no pressure of gift giving and secret keeping! 

When we aren't travelling for Thanksgiving, one of our favorite traditions is to eat Thanksgiving lunch at the Raleigh City Club restaurant, where my dad is a member. It is situated at the top of a tall building in downtown Raleigh, where the windows have some amazing views of the city below.

As usual, Lila was our best eater that day, scarfing down her meal and scavenging everyone else's plates as well!

As we walked out to the city streets after lunch, the wind began to blow and swirled the huge pile of leaves like a tornado! It was so fun to be in the middle of it, the kids were squealing with delight!

Overall, it was a great meal, and a relaxing day, as Thanksgiving should be!

Halloween In Our New Neighborhood

We made sure to do all the festive things for Halloween this year. We started with a stop at the corner farm stand by our house. We oo-ed and ahh-ed over the baby piggies and cats while we picked out pumpkins! I may have gone a little overboard on the amount of pumpkins we bought, but I was excited to decorate our front porch this year!

We carved a pumpkin for each kid, while Lila crawled around eating raw pumpkin innards. It was funny and disgusting all at the same time. We went to a friend's Halloween party, watched Lucy in her preschool costume parade, read spooky books, and got the kids all dressed up in their costumes for the big night.

We had a great time trick or treating in our new neighborhood, seeing all the other families out and about along the sidewalks. The kid's got more candy than ever before, and they were pretty excited for their stash! With this being our first Halloween in a new house and neighborhood, I think we all felt a bit of longing and nostalgia for our old neighborhood. It was the first time that I really missed it since moving. For some reason, Halloween is one of the things that brings back the most memories and happy thoughts from that home and the people there. Originally, we had talked about going back there to trick or treat down our old street with old friends, but in the end we decided to move on with new traditions and new memories here in our new home.

It seems a little weird, but Halloween is one of my favorite holidays. There is no pressure that comes with giving presents, and the kids have so much pure joy as they run down the street collecting candy. As a parent, that joy is the best thing in the world to witness!