our thanksgiving!

This year our Thanksgiving was slightly different from most…. My Long Island family couldn’t make it so it was just little ole us… you know, the group that gets together all the time…. And that’s ok! It just didn’t feel very “special” since we literally got together five days in a row around this holiday and all the time. So. My sister and I had some plans… Charlie Brown’s Thanksgiving (bust on my end for not being able to find it except for clips on YouTube), Cupcake turkeys and an Indian corn craft. It broke up the day I will say. 

And of course there was allll the eating of allll the things. All the family time! Somewhere in the midst of all of this our Elf on the Shelf arrived bringing matching pajamas which Christmas miracle of all miracles, the cousins had the same ones! And not a single one of my kids questioned how that was? But alas! Another year with Cornelius!

washington dc, the second day.

Sunday morning we got up and packed up and got our coffee all before heading out to see The Capital Building… they were decorating the Christmas tree! Too bad we juuuust missed it. At ten we were in the Air and Space Museum which sadly was half closed for renovations. Bummer. To iep and her girls left at this point and the rest of us headed across the mall to the National Gallery of Art for a quick gander… saw some things before heading over to Chantilly, VA to eat quick and then go see the really BIG Air and Space Museum. This has been on Matt’s wishlist for literal years but we never find ourselves nearby. It did not disappoint. The hanger alone is enough to see but the shuttle? Wow. Truly such a great experience to see it in person. There was so much more to explore in that area that we will definitely go back! Matt might go on his own though so he can truly enjoy. 

washington dc, an afternoon.

Once everyone had their food secured in their bellies we did some site seeing. David enjoyed this all immensely as he has been learning about the government in school. Eating it all up, as it were. We went past The White House, The Washington Monument, The WWII Memorial and then made our way down to The Lincoln Memorial….. all before traipsing back to our hotel where we started our day. Lots of steps for some of those littler legs but they were troopers. We were able to get tables in our hotel restaurant to eat… even though the food left much to be desired at least we didn’t have to walk anywhere and we had our own area of the restaurant. Then it was back to our room for drinks and just chilling out, boys in our bedroom, girls in Toniel’s room…. The adults in between. Let me tell you I am a major fan of connecting rooms. 

washington dc, a morning.

Well we did it again! A weekend away with friends! This time instead of Philly we headed more south to our nation’s capital. Visit some museums, see some monuments… mission accomplished!

We got there Saturday morning and made our way right the the Museum of Natural History. Which to be clear is quite the massive place and there was just so much going on. So many people. So many kids to count. Always on to the next new thing and we had to divide and conquer. Not even sure they learned anything but they sure tore around!

Then we hit up Shake Shack for lunch which didn’t seem like a long walk from The Mall but it was. Starving children do not make happy children. But I did enjoy my first time there!

moments in between…

We have the Halloween costume that is worn daily…my first time volunteering in the middle school where I caught up with Letty for a quick second… I went with a mood when I did some fall shopping for myself… we all got our hairs did… I spied on the boys at work a few times… celebrated Carper’s birthday… and then Avery’s birthday… and of course, had a few Starbucks! Dinner out for our anniversary… Lots of eating out with friends… Evan’s birthday party where all the kids got to join in on the fun and a sneak peak at our basement!

a holiday home tour! the reading room.

Previously known as: the play room. But now that the kids are more independent and into different types of things I am slowly reclaiming it for a reading nook. Not that I have been finding the time as of late to read but if I would the nook would be ready for me! The kids still have basically the bottom two shelves all around which they choose to trash on the daily… but we are getting there!

a holiday home tour! the foyer.

Are we sick of these? How many times can I share before it is too many? I tend to find them useful for those times when I am decorating and cannot for the life of me remember where I put a certain decor item… when you have 18 bins and nine trees you need to document. At least I think. So if decor and the holidays are not your thing I’ll see you on the flip side….and I mean that in the most respectful of ways. It is not for the faint of heart!

The foyer is always a favorite. The flocked tree in the mirror…. The garland… it is also the cats’ favorite tree. Ahem. Thanks for that Nera. The foyer shelf below the window makes it official that all my neighbors know I am crazy well before it is appropriate to be so but I just love the colored lights up there! And then of course there is how it looks at night…

the wrap up of fall sports.

Just way later. Baseball ended in mid-October and that feels like a lifetime ago while hockey has had an ending here and then a real ending there. That happens whenever your on more than one team. Thank you to all who have come and supported these two in all kinds of weather… we stick together…oh wait. And try and you for all the good photos sent to my by Shauna!

And all that to say let’s start in with basketball! For all three. Yay. 


This caused quite the stir in our town, did it in yours? The township had is scheduled for Friday night but the weather was so terrible our development made the executive decision to postpone it to the actual day of Halloween, a day with a beautiful forecast. The family came over and pizza was eaten and costumes and layers were donned all before six pm. And off we went! Probably the best trick-or-treat yet! The kids had so much fun and got so much candy… the littlest ones enjoyed themselves and the eldest helped them along the way. We saw old friends and new friends… and did I mention the amount of candy?! Such a great night and so many memories made!

the national aquarium

We celebrated fifteen years this year. A decade and a half. So in honor of that Matt and I planned on going away without the kids for the second time in our marriage. Our plan was Inner Harbor and Fells Point. Dom however had other plans. We just didn’t feel right leaving the kids in case one of them got it next because that is how the stomach bug goes right? Anyways all part of this was the aquarium. The kids had gotten money from my aunt and uncle for Easter and we decided we would get a family pass to the aquarium with it instead of say, toys. We hadn’t gotten down there yet so this weekend was going to be our first. So we still went away, Matt and I, just with the kids and only for a few hours. 

They had never been to the aquarium before and loved it! David couldn’t wait to rush on to see the next best thing, Dom could have watched those fish swim in each and every tank all the day long and Letty same, with a touch of fear of abandonment. We saw some dolphins from afar and David touched a jellyfish the brave boy! The kids can’t wait to go back again! 

annapolis day two

Day two we all actually slept in. Like, till 8. Who are we? We meandered down for coffee and a view by the water before getting dressed for the day. There were. Few sites we hadn’t seen the day before so we hit them up before an early lunch and a departure home. It was a quick trip but such a good one! Thank you ladies for being you!


I did a thing. Again. I left my kids with Matt for the night. Gasp! Laurie how could you!? I know. The mind reels. This year Janelle and Toniel and I decided our fall day away would be to Annapolis. We had all heard such good things! All the fall, colonial-type vibes with lots around within walking distance of our hotel! It was supposed to rain but thankfully that held off and we had the most gorgeous day! Walking the town, stopping for food and drink and some history, etc. oh and we stayed in a really old hotel that I’m fairly certain was haunted. All work and no play makes Jack a dull boy type haunted. 

pumpkin carving night

Always a chaotic night. Put it up there with Christmas cookie baking. And then to make it more of a thing we also took our annual cousins in their costumes photo too. And a ride in Pop’s kubota. And dinner. On a school night. But we got it all in! We can do hard things!

Nonna is simply the best. She had all the messy bits cleared out and ready to go so all we had to do was get to carving. Which makes life as a parent infinitely easier. Spooky music on and carve away kids! And see also, Tenley. This season she has been the Belle of the ball! She is at such a fun age and loves all the things!

hersheypark in the dark take two

This time, with friends! And not quite in the dark. Toniel had an extra pass so Matt was able to join! Which he was so pleased about! We didn’t have too long but we were able to get some rides in and a drink or two before the candy trail before we had to go on to the next thing but I’m glad we were able to hang with them for a little!

our annual gettysburg trip

Annual and probably last. David queried, is it really worth it to drive an hour and a half each way just to look at some monuments and climb some rocks? Cut me to the core why don’t you Dave. Jeez. This year I told him yes it absolutely is worth it and then after listening to them argue throughout the park I think he may be on to something. 

But first we stopped and got a burger. I love the theme here, choosing a burger from the north or south. We dodged a bit of rain while eating and it cleared up in time for us to do our park thing. Visit the same few monuments, climb the same observation tower and have the same anxiety, hit up what is most certainly not Rapunzel’s tower and finish the trip with the rocks at Devil’s Den. Right before the rain started again. 

At least it was a pretty day while the rain stayed away and we didn’t have sports. A nice break!

lots of the in between

We have been busy this past month, clearly. Doing all the fall things of course but all the sports things sprinkled in there too (more on that later as one does). Our pool closed and Sorellina got her little fix so she stops looking for make suitors…. Both very traumatic things if I do say so… the boys had their book fair and we got to have lunch with them too! There was good sky and a sleepover…. All sorts of confusion happening with Christmas decor but Halloween movies… I had my first tiny bite of being a substitute teacher… lots of good eats and school photos and David’s fall party. And of course most important of all our anniversary! Oh October. You were a month!

hersheypark in the dark!

Always a classic, this amusement park at Halloween. The lights and the music. The costumes and the candy! Oh my! We were able to go together with all the cousins which as you know I love being able to do! The triplets have now all sized up and can go on the wooden rollercoasters which opens up a bunch of options for my siblings to be the fun uncles/aunts as their mother can only handle so much before turning a bit green….we did quite a few rides before heading towards the trick-or-treat trail where they got all the Hershey’s candy! I call it a successful night!

trunk or treat with ice cream!

I know that inside these four walls Christmas has already arrived but on these dusty blog walls we have some serious catching up to do! And we will get there. We will. 

A few weeks (who knows how many at this point) my friend’s ice cream truck was parked at a local trunk-or-treat so we of course had to get the kids in some semblance of a Halloween costume and go visit her! Letty came a bit later right from practice as a field hockey player. Desperate times! It was super crowded but the kids still had fun with friends and the extra candy was a nice little bonus.