Sunday, December 11, 2011

A Tale of Two Turkeys

This year we spent Thanksgiving at the cabin in NY.

It took a serious amount of turkey to feed this clan . . .

It was really special to celebrate with the "old timers" - my great uncle Frank and my
grandfather. I would include my nana here too but I am certain she wouldn't appreciate being called an "old timer." I almost choked on my turkey during a certain conversation with my great uncle Frank. It kinda went like this . . .
Me: I didn't know you were sick.
Him: Yeah, I have cancer a foot up my dupa!
I hope you don't need me to translate what he meant by "dupa." Ahh, I guess you can say things when you are in your 90s that you just can't get away with saying any other time. I still laugh when I think of the awkward silence after he said that . . . . kinda like, did he just say what I think he said????

I love my family!

That news didn't seem to disturb anyone's appetites, however.

This was John's dessert plate.

My mom makes seriously good pie . . .

although I'm not sure good pie excuses the ridiculousness of this.

We spent the next couple couple days playing some cut throat games of Carcassonne
and enjoying each other's company.

We were also on pins and needles, hoping one of the kids wouldn't give away the real reason we all went up to the cabin . . .

to celebrate my grandfather's 85th birthday with a surprise party in Buffalo with all his nearest and dearest. Tune in soon for that tale.

I'll Want To Remember This Someday

Once the thrill of the election was over, my next step was being sworn in. My kids came to city hall and acted like they owned the place.

Brendan wasted no time at all climbing into the mayor's chair.

Megan settled for my chair!

Not shown:

Brendan throwing a tantrum THIS BIG while I took my oath of office. Seriously, people are still talking about it. Imagine John wrestling with a screaming Brendan, me so stressed I raised my left hand instead of my right, and Megan stepping in to hold the Bible because John's hands were FULL. Good times! That is what they get for scheduling my oath of office at bedtime.

Cutest moment of the night: Megan asking me if they were going to have crafts for the kids.

Hmmm, maybe something we should consider in the future!

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

And the winner is . . .

If I were the type to gloat, I would say that was the largest margin of victory in the entire county. Good thing I'm not.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Trick - or - Treat 2011

Our Halloween began as usual . . .

posing for portraits on the front porch.

Only one little monster didn't quite get the concept of trick-or-treat. Brendan was like, "Jackpot. Found the candy! I think I'm gonna fill up my treat bucket right here on the front porch while mom is distracted taking photos of Megan."

Sorry about the poor picture quality. No need to adjust your monitor. My flash was turned off. I apologize in advance for the headache these pictures may cause.

John's pumpkin masterpiece.

Megan, less than enthusiastic about posing for another picture before she even had one piece of candy.

Our traditional photo with our neighbor friends.

And now I need your help with something . . .

I just can't decide which Frankenstein is more scary.

This one.

Or this one?

You decide.

Happy Halloween 2011.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Keller Halloween Spooktacular 2011

The Keller Halloween Spooktacular has become somewhat of a tradition in these parts.

This year, we began the festivities with the creation of the famous Frankensnack.

For a step-by-step tutorial on how to make the famous dessert we enjoy every year, click here (only we use a sharpie marker to draw the face instead of painting it with chocolate. Much easier.)

Drawing the faces on the Frankensnacks.

Mixing up the pudding


Then we made some creepy crawly bug juice.

The bug juice was a disgusting new addition to the Spooktacular this year.

Made from fruit punch, ginger ale, sherbert, gummy slugs and worms,

this tasty treat was a big hit. Thank goodness this was part of the menu since the bugs were the only part of the meal Brendan actually consumed.

And we cannot forget the mummy dogs!


Brendan wasted no time shoving all the worms into his mouth at once.

Then it was on to the annual pumpkin carving contest, although I'm not really sure why we even call it a contest. Megan wins every year.

Seriously, who ever heard of a 5 year old carving a pumpkin?

Don't believe me?

Check out the skills . . .

Brendan was pretty impressed, too!

Check out his surgical bracelet from the other day.

He won't let me cut it off.

Guess who did this pumpkin?

Yep, me.

The election is less than two weeks away.

I thought it was pretty clever.

John made fun of it.

Imagine John's trying-to-sound-like-an-idiot voice . . .

"Yep, I wasn't sure who I was going to vote for until I saw that pumpkin and now the decision is so clear!" John, you are such a wiseacre.

John also had an amazing pumpkin creation this year (not as amazing as the "Vote Keller" pumpkin) but I have no photo of it yet. He was still working on it when I retired my camera for the evening. Don't worry too much. It will be included in the Halloween photos I'm sure.

And that, folks, was how we celebrated the Keller Halloween Spooktacular 2011.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Brendan's Surgery

After the 6th ear infection of 2011 (and all the crankiness and lack of sleep that goes with them) we took the doctor's advice and scheduled Brendan for surgery to have tubes inserted.

His surgery was scheduled for early this morning and John's parents traveled from Dayton to help us get Megan off to school and provide moral support.

Last night, John's mom was so worried we would oversleep she prayed God would wake us up on time. No joke - there was a huge thunderstorm 5 minutes before our alarms were set to go off and we all woke up. Whoa! She has some serious pull with the man upstairs. I asked her to pray we win the lottery. I'll let you know how that turns out.

Anyway, here are some pics of Brendan before his surgery.

The surgery only took about 8 minutes. Based on the price of the surgery, the doctor earns $98438595905792549.96 a minute. I'm enrolling John in medical school tomorrow.

Favorite moments of the day:

1. Hearing Brendan sing "Twiiiiiiiiiiiinkle Twiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiinkle Liiiittle Staaaaaaar" after they gave him the "relaxation" meds before surgery. It was kinda like drunken two year old karaoke.

2. Bringing Brendan home and watching him stumble all over the living room. He was like a weeble-wobble except this weeble-wobble actually fell down. He would say, "Oops! I sorry. I'm o-tay" and get right back up again.

3. Going to the Trunk-or-Treat event at Megan's school. He was the only Frankenstein there that actually had surgery that morning. That degree of authenticity should have won him the costume contest, don't you think?

We'll do anything for a little free candy around here.

Seriously though, he is doing just fine - acting like his normal self.

The doctor said he had no restrictions, so don't go thinking I'm a bad mom because I dragged my freshly-operated-on-two-year-old to trunk or treat just to get his bag of candy.

Cause I didn't.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Leeds Farm 2011

With my re-election campaign in full swing, I have to admit I've been out of the house more than I would like. I've been gone quite a bit lately and John has had to take over just about everything so I can go out and shake hands, talk economic development and fiber optic networks, etc. I really do enjoy getting out and talking to people but I started missing my two little people. So today, I temporarily suspended the Re-elect Lisa Train for a little fall fun at

Leed's Farm!

In case you're not familiar with Leed's Farm, it is a friendly little farm not too far from our house. We go every year, drop a large wad of cash, and spend the day trying to get both kids to look in the same direction for a picture. It is great fun!

See what I mean about the picture thing?

We take this traditional picture every year and marvel at how much the kids have grown since last year.

Making a snow angel in the corn . . . or would that be a corn angel? You decide.

One out of two people looking in the correct direction = photo success.

And, of course, we cannot forget the Banana Bus. There was one precarious year when I got in the Banana Bus and wasn't very sure I was going to be able to pry myself out. I'm so glad they added seatbelts this year so Brendan could ride on his own.

Imagine my surprise when I was walking to unbuckle him after the ride was over and he unbuckled himself and got out on his own. Seatbelts = false sense of security.

Then it was time to feed the goats.

Despite how these pictures make it look, the fun of feeding the goats lasted approximately 0.00009 seconds.

Then it was on to some more fun,

and some more unsuccessful attempts to get both kids to look in the same direction at the same time.

Then it was on to the zip line!

And yes, my friends, that is my 2 year old baby zip lining.

Let me say that again.

My two year old baby can zip line!

I learned several things today.

1. There is not a thing in this world

that means more to me than my little peeps.

2. Pictures are a lot more successful when

taken one child at a time.

3. It is tough to find a place more fun

than Leed's Farm in the fall.