Our Halloween was packed full of firsts for each of the kids. The whole day was so rushed it was hard to really capture all of them.
Jackson had his first field trip. The school required each child to have a guardian to chaperone. I didn't think I'd be too helpful monitoring my child at the zoo while feeding, changing, and caring for three infants. Luckily for Jack, his MiMi volunteered to chaperone. I'm not sure which one was more excited.
The zoo park was really interactive and perfect for all ages. Jackson was able to get within a few feet of a variety of animals and even touch goats, snakes, kangaroos, zebras, and birds.
While Jackson was on his field trip, I dressed the babies in their Halloween onesies and conducted a quick photo shoot on the couch. They were their usual silly selves.
I had planned to make my own candy this year to give to my nieces and nephews. I found a really easy recipe for chocolate peanut clusters that you make in the Crock Pot. I loaded the trio in the van and set out for WalMart. By the time I added up the cost of all the ingredients it was well over $20. Not wanting to spend that much money, I spent $5 on a bag of carrots and package of cream cheese and decided to bake my new favorite carrot cake instead. As soon as the babies were down for their nap, I began baking.
Jackson was home before I had a chance to decorate, so I chose to wait until he took a nap. I had seen a picture of mummy cupcakes online that looked really easy to make. Without any research, I piped ribbons of icing on the cupcake and used two M&M's for eyes. It didn't resemble a mummy in the least.
I watched a two minute YouTube video, learned the technique, and was able to quickly decorate two dozen "yummy mummy carrot cupcakes". Much better!
Jesse left work right away and was home just after four o'clock. We wanted to have some individual family time before meeting my family for trick-or-treating. We hurriedly packed the diaper bag and readied the children, just in time to sit in rush hour traffic for an hour. At least I had plenty of time to pump. Our dinner preparations consisted of a McDonald's drive-thru run.
We went to a bustling neighborhood to ensure that Jackson would have a fun first trick-or-treat experience. Jesse parked the van in a cul-de-sac. We brought the wagon for the kids to ride in, but the babies were not having that one bit! Jesse and I ended up carrying them, which brought about ridiculous levels of attention. Each time someone opened their door we were bombarded with questions and exclamations. At one home, the lady literally opened the door to our sweet Jack, glanced at us, and yelled, "OH MY GOD! TRIPLETS! COME LOOK!" as if we were aliens. After only a few houses, Jesse opted to carry the girls back to the van while Jack, James, and I resumed trick-or-treating. The focus was finally on Jackson while James and I were more or less ignored.
Jackson had rehearsed saying "trick or treat" dozens of times and was so proud to carry his pumpkin bucket to collect candy. Jesse and I were curious if Jack would be scared or timid, but he did a great job! His favorite part was ringing the doorbell at each house. He racked up on candy.
After leaving the neighborhood, we drove a few minutes to the house I grew up in/the current home of my brother. There we met up with my siblings, nieces, and nephews so we could all go trick-or-treating together to our extended family members. I was pleasantly surprised to find my niece/godchild/mini-me dressed like Dorothy from the Wizard of Oz. She was the perfect match with our tiny lion, tiger, and bear!
One of my favorite Halloween family traditions is our candy swap. All children gather in one room, dump out their buckets, and exchange candy. Normally, candy flies through the air as children yell their requests. The kids were very mild this year.
Here's the annual "couch photo", as originally requested by my mother many years ago. I can't imagine what she would think of all her grandkids now. We have certainly outgrown her couch!
It was a late night and we didn't return home until after 9 p.m. Jesse and I once again tag teamed to get all four kids in bed. We weren't far behind them.
I realized the next day that I never got a picture of James, Amelia, and Madeline together. I put their hats back on and took close up pictures so I could still make a collage from their first Halloween.