Thursday, November 26, 2009

Our First Thanksgiving

We had our first Thanksgiving as a family in America today. Dan, who works with Ben, invited us to his parents house for Thanksgiving dinner. Z has been going on about wanting to eat Pumpkin pie as he has been learning all about Thanksgiving at school and decided that he liked the sound of Pumpkin Pie. We were told not to take anything but said we couldn't arrive empty handed so we brought a bottle of wine along with us. Dans sister was there with her husband and their daughter who is a little bit younger than K. Z and K played very nicely with her. The watched a dvd, played on the piano and played with some toys together.

The kids tried a bit of everything and had a choice of desserts. There was pumpkin pie, apple pie, chocolate pie and pumpkin cake. Z tried a bit of all the pies and K just had a bit of pumpkin pie. We even got a 'care package' to bring home of some left overs, including pudding! We ate a lot but not too much that we were stuffed and feeling uncomfortable. They were a lovely family and it was very nice of them to invite us to share their Thanksgiving day with them.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Indiana State Library

We went to the Children's Museum of Indianapolis the other weekend and had lots of fun. We have become members of the museum so we can now go as much as we want for the next 12 months. Santa is due to arrive the next Friday after Thanksgiving and in early December a Barbie exhibit is due to open so we will most likely go back for that. We decided to give the Indiana State Museum a try today. All in all I think I prefer the Children's Museum. Does that make me a child?

We also were given the option of joining the State Museum but decided that the kids were probably a but young for it and we were more likely to go back to the other one. They are very close to each other geographically but the State Museum seems a bit more grown up and has lots of stuff to read. If you are only 4 and 6 years old then that is not a fun day out!

They did enjoy, however, the sandwich from Jimmy Johns and the ice cream for dessert at the South Bend Chocolate Company Shop. Although K did want to eat her ice cream via a straw and it wasn't really possible due to it being frozen!

Saturday, November 21, 2009

Carmel Christmas Lights Switch On

The Carmel Christmas Lights were switched on today so we went along to have a look at them. We didn't line up to see Santa as we would still be waiting now, but did get some balloon animals. K wanted a reindeer hat and Z wanted a candy cane. We took some pictures of the lights but somehow managed to forget to take a picture of the big tree! We will go back and get one. Watching it all get turned on made me realise that we don't have any Christmas decorations and we will need to go and get some after Thanksgiving.

After we watched the lights and wandered around the stalls that were there, we went home to get ready for a party at David and Sian's house. (They are the expats who have been so lovely and helpful to Ben and I since we arrived) We met loads of people whose names I am sorry to say I forgot almost as soon as I was told them! Their house is gorgeous and K and Z had fun playing on the Wii and generally staying up late! I agreed to drive home so Ben could drink. First time driving at night and I didn't have a clue where I was! No sat nav to get me back, just Ben giving me directions. Managed to get back to the apartment in one piece.

We also got a sofa today. Donated to us by a friend of Sian. She was moving to a new place and couldn't get it in the new apartment. No longer sitting on car seats in the lounge! Woo-Hoo!

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Kids Treat

The kids have been good most of the week and I had been promising them they could decorate cookies at some point. So once Z had done his homework I set the frosting and sprinkles on the table and let them loose. I will admit I did a few myself and some have been left undecorated as Ben is not particularly keen on frosting. The kids enjoyed it and I just home the fact that I let them taste 1 each will not mean they will be on a sugar rush for the rest of the evening!

                 I think I may need to limit them to 1 a day! I also think I may need to buy a vacuum as there may be some sprinkles on the carpet! I really am my own worst enemy at times!

I could make my own frosting and it would probably not be as sweet, but I really couldn't be bothered and the ready made stuff is so much easier. Plus I left my cake recipe book back in the UK and that had all my frosting recipes in it.                        


Wednesday, November 18, 2009


Z does not like having vaccinations. In fact I would go as far as saying he hates having vaccinations! He threw a hissy fit both times I took him to get a dose of the Hep B vaccination he needed for going to school in America. He hears the word vaccination and seems to automatically think about needles. Understandable I guess. Each time he has had a vaccination I have been with him. However he was scheduled to have a dose of the H1N1 swine flu vaccine at school today. No parents were allowed to be in school with their child when they got it done. All Elementary students were getting them done this week and the High School kids have had their postponed for a little while until they have enough doses in. The vaccine that Z would get would either be a jab in the arm or a nasal spray. I would have no idea what he would get until he came home at the end of the school day. If I am truthful I was expecting a call from the school saying he had gotten hysterical and they couldn't give him his dose. No call came. I waited for the school bus at 2.45pm and off he got. He seemed quite happy. I thought maybe they hadn't done it after all. So I asked him about it. Turns out he did get it done. He had the nasal spray and he found it funny as he had to squish one nostril then the other and it made him talk funny! He is due another dose at some point as all kids under 10 need 2 doses but I am not sure when that will be. Although I am a bit more relaxed about it as he is likely to get the nasal spray again and he didn't mind it at all. Relief!

2nd Times A Charm

Last time I ventured out in the car I got lost. Twice. Today I went out with specific tasks in mind and I knew I needed to get them done as Ben will have the car Thursday and Friday as the guy who he car pools with is off work on those days.

My mission today was to get to Chase to open some kind of bank account and then to Walmart so I could get some Christmas cards to mail to the UK and get some more dinner plates, bowls etc as we only have a 4 piece setting and if we have guests then we will have fun at dinner time. (We are due a guest next weekend so wanted to get the plates before then as I would be likely to forget!)

So off I set with K in the back of the car. I didn't even bother with the Sat Nav this time. I left it in the glove box. I had spent a good 10 minutes or so on Google maps before we left looking at where we were going and at what point I had to turn and tried to remember landmarks or store names near these points. What do you know, 4 minutes later I was pulling into the car park by the bank! I got there. No diversions or wrong turns! Woo-Hoo! We went in and I sat down with Amanda who took me through the process. I think the whole process took about 20 minutes. K was entertained during this time by drawing on a pad of paper. She actually managed to write her name backwards. She got each letter correct. It was like mirror writing and she did it without a mirror! I was very impressed! I think I would struggle with that.

When we left there I drove down the car park a bit and parked outside Walmart. OK so I could have just walked down to the store but I knew I was going to be coming out with a dinner set and didn't want to carry it very far back to the car! I think we spent about 20 minutes in the store but most of that time was having a debate with K about what color umbrella to get. It has been raining quite a bit here over the past few days and the only umbrellas we have are a kids Dora the Explorer and a kids Scooby Doo umbrella! Not really fitting for an adult to use. Especially when you are waiting in the rain for a school bus to turn up. I'll give you 1 guess who did that this morning!

Monday, November 16, 2009

Driving In the Car

Today Ben left the car keys with me so I could 'go for a drive round the block and the car park' so I could get used to driving the car. Once Ben was off to work and Z was at school I put K in the car and decided I would try to get to Chase so I could open a bank account. Notice I say 'try'! I put on the Sat Nav and start driving down the road. I had a vague idea where I wanted to go to but thought the Sat Nav would help. Of course it can only help me if I have programmed it properly! I quickly notice that although the map is showing me where I am and what direction I am going, I am not hearing the annoying woman;s voice telling me when to turn etc. By this point I can't sort it out as I am driving and there is no where I can pull over. So I keep driving. Eventually I find somewhere to turn around and we head back in the opposite direction. I pull into the car park at Target and decide to go in to get some bags of potato chips for the party we are going to at the weekend. When we come out K decides she wants to go home and have lunch. Off we go. I still haven't sorted out the Sat Nav and continue on the road and decide I know where I am going anyway. The apartment complex should appear on the left any minute now. Wait a sec. Why is it on the right?! Oh good grief! I have taken the wrong turn. Again! When we go full circle and we end up back at the apartment I park the car and decide it would be safer to stay at home in case I was to get lost again and not be back in time for Z coming back from school! Ben has the car tomorrow so my next expedition may need to wait till Wednesday. I do need to get to a bank though. Even though I did get lost. Twice. I managed to get out in the car by myself and drive around. Me in an automatic car on the other side of the road in a foreign country! I am quite pleased with myself if I do say so!

Sunday, November 15, 2009

What A Weekend!

This was the first weekend that we were all able to get out and about as a family without having to walk everywhere. The kids were very pleased about that!

Saturday started with me joining a local Weight Watchers club. The meeting starts at 8.30am so I don't miss out on any of the weekend and first thing in the morning has to be the best time of day to be weighed! Once I was done with fat club I wandered over to Barnes & Noble book stores. It was great. So many books to look at and I could quite happily have wandered around there for ages! I picked up a few books for the kids, some bits to help Z at school, a magazine for each of the kids and a magazine for me. I am waiting for my B&N membership card. I can save upto 40% on some things with it!

Once I was done buying stuff there, Ben and the kids came to pick me up and we went to Meijer to get some groceries and things we needed for the apartment. Once we had everything in the cart and I worked out what coupons we could use, it was time to pay. Over $220! But that was with savings of over $25 and we had not had a chance to do a big shop and buy big items and lots of cans etc since me and the kids arrived. Meijer is open 24 hours a day for 364 days of the year! As we were so long in the store the kids started to get bored and started repeating over and over again that they wanted to go home. So we got a sandwich and drink in the cafe and then headed home. We packed everything away and let the kids watch a bit of Monsters V  Aliens for a bit before we headed out again. This time to Target so I could get a few electric items we needed. We didn't have a kettle, toaster or  mixer (for when I am baking). I also wanted to get an electric toothbrush and Ben needed a new headshaver. I pop into the store and Ben goes round to Sian's house to drop off something she had loaned us that we didn't need anymore. I was merrily going round the store filling my cart and then headed to the register to pay. All going through happily with no problems until the guy scanning everything asked me for id!

What on earth had I bought that required me to show id?! Only thing I had was my UK driving licence and this just confused the guy. Usually he would be shown an Indiana State driving licence and they have barcodes on the back that can be swiped through the till but mine didn't so he would have to manually enter my date of birth. Trying to explain to them (a supervisor turned up to assist) that in the UK we show dates as day then month was more complicated than it really needed to be! What was it that needed me to show id? It turns out it was because I had gotten a packet of regular Tylenol and Tylenol Cold medicine!   I had decided to get them as a 'just in case' precaution. That'll teach me! Once he was happy I was allowed to buy it all he rang it all through. Again it was just over $220! I have never spent that much money in one day before! By the time I got home I was done for the day and just wanted to sit. Sunday was going to be spent walking so I wanted to rest!

When we were done with breakfast on Sunday morning we told the kids what their treat for the day was going to be. We had been teasing them all week but never told them what it was they were going to be doing for the treat. First off we were going to look at a few furniture stores as we hope to buy a couch of some description soon. Although Ben has come up with a novel idea for seating in the lounge. He has taken the back two seats out of the car!

On our way to one of the furniture stores Ben told me to drive for a bit but in doing so I managed to miss a turning and we got lost so I pulled into a car park and we swapped over so he could navigate the rest of the way! Once we were done looking at sofas (I think we may have found one and will probably go back next weekend to buy it) we headed onto the treat. We went to The Children's Museum of Indianapolis.

It is 4 floors of different things for kids to look at and touch, move, feel and play with. At different points in our visit the kids dressed up as dinosaurs, lobsters, seahorses, dogs and a charater from Star Wars Clone Wars! The loved it and walked for ages around all the floors and looking at all the exhibits. There is more stuff coming later this month and they still have to decorate for Christmas and Santa is due November 27th so I think we will definitely be going back! You can get membership for a family for a year so when we next go I think we will go for that and we can use the tickets we bought for this visit towards the cost of the membership.

Friday, November 13, 2009

School Differences

I have learnt that there are some differences between Z's school in the UK and his new school here in the US and not just the accent!

Then: Leave for school 0845 and walk to school for school to start 0850.
Now: Leave for school 0740 on bus for school to start at 0810.

Then: Homework once a week. Usually one of following examples, draw a picture, write a few sentences, add a few numbers and similar.
Now: Homework every day until Thursday with a spelling and math test on Friday.

Then: Basic reading, writing and maths (so it appeared) with PE twice a week.
Now: Monday reading, writing and math. Also PE & Music.
         Tuesday reading, writing and math. Also Spanish & Library.
         Wednesday reading, writing and math. Also Art.
         Thursday reading, writing and math. Also PE
         Friday reading, writing and math. Also Spanish.

Then: School finish 1530 and walk home.
Now: School finish 1435 and get bus home.

Then: Weekly general school newsletter from school in bookbag.
Now: Weekly class newsletter and general school newsletter in bookbag. Email school additional newsletter with activities in school and community. Phone messages with notifications (todays was about the H1N1 vaccinations)

Then: School photo mid way through the year.
Now: School photo mid way through the year and school Yearbook at end of year.

Then: School report card towards end of year
Now: School report card towards end of year. Plus school online system to which parents can register to see childrens grades throughout the year.

Then: Lunch brought from home, ordered and paid for week in advance or go home for lunch.
Now: Lunch brought from home or chosen at school and paid for via account that can be credited online.

Monday, November 9, 2009

Cars and Buses

Last night Ben picked up our new car. We are now the owners of a gold colored 2002 Kia Sedona minivan. We need to get it insured and get new plates for it but at least we don't have to worry about crossing 60 lanes of traffic to get to the nearest store and making the kids walk for almost an hour!

This morning Zackery got the school bus for the first time to go to school. He got on the bus at 7.40am and got back from school at 2.40pm. Today he had his school photos taken for the school year book ($36) and we paid for his book rental fees ($98.12).

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Weekend Again

Ben decided on a car and was scheduled to get it today but the guy who was helping him came round and said it needs to be tomorrow now. There goes my plan for getting some shopping done in the morning! We are getting a Kia Sedona mini van. We have been told that it is illegal to buy/sell cars on a Sunday in the US so we are not entirely sure what is going to happen tomorrow. Fingers crossed it goes fine and the guy takes the check and simply cashes it on Monday.

As we couldn't go shopping or anywhere any great distance away we went for a little 'adventure' as K calls it. We walked along this pathway, that wasn't quite finished looking for a park the kids could play in. Quite soon we were in this very expensive looking neighborhood and I felt like I was going to get pounced on by security at any point. It wasn't a gated community but it may as well have been. After a while Z decided that his legs were tired and he wanted to go back. So, I turn around with Z and head back to the apartment and Ben carries on with K looking for the park.

We arrive back at the apartment and Z collapses to the floor and declares he needs to watch a DVD and it must be the Charlie and Lola halloween show. Eventually K and Ben come back and I read with Z while K helps Ben in the kitchen making dinner.

Once the kids get in bed and settle, after about an hour or so, I settle down and get involved in my new hobby. Coupon clipping. When I do finally get to the store I am going to have loads of coupons! There are just hundreds of coupons in the papers and we get flyers in the mail that have coupons on them. I currently have dozens in a little pile next to me. .....I need to get out more!

Friday, November 6, 2009

First Day at School

Z went to school today. He had to be there at 7.50am so we could see the teacher before the other students got there. Ben's work colleague Dan gave us all a ride down to the school so we got there on time. We first went to the school office so I could hand in a form for Z to get the H1N1 vaccine and hand in my form and joining fee of $10 for the PTO. I also give them a copy of Z's birth certificate and passport. We then go down to the classroom with his new teacher. She goes through the morning routine with him and shows him where he will sit and where to put his coat etc. She then gives me a folder about the class and requirements etc. I have already been given a folder from the office telling me all about what goes on at the school and how we can do certain things, like credit his account so he can buy lunch if he wants. I wasn't expecting them to give me anything and I am starting to wonder how I am going to manage to carry it all and walk home with K, who has decided to bring her new toy puppy with her!

The school bell rings and we leave Z in the capable hands of his new teacher. I walk with K back along the corridor and there are so many kids. They are everywhere. I feel really tall all of a sudden too.

K and I walk back along the road to the apartment. To be honest though I do most of the walking and K sits on my shoulders and balances her toy puppy on my head. We chill out for the rest of the afternoon and leave just before 2pm to walk back along to the school for Z getting out at 2.35pm. As we get there a bit early we stop off at the fancy looking public library and ask what we need to do to join. It turns out all we need to do it show proof of residency in the district and that is all that is needed. Once we are done there we go round the corner to the school and wait for Z to come out. When he finally does he seems OK but looks a bit tired and a little bit overwhelmed by the whole thing. I go into the school again with him and K to see the teacher and let her know what bus Z is going to be getting from Monday. She says that he did OK but is very young. I get a sense of deja vu as that is what his Reception year teacher said at his old school. She said that all the other students have done all this work that he obviously hasn't and their reading and math skills are higher than his. He is going to have a lot of work to do but he also has the added pressure of still settling in to living in a new country. He is too old to be in Kindergarten and I want him to stay in 1st grade. The teaching he has had in the UK is obviously different to what they do in the US but I am hopeful that he will be fine. One thing that will have to change is his book bag as the one I go him on Wednesday is not big enough for his class folders and books! I found one online that is apparently good for Elementary children. Isn't it a bit big??

Monday is picture re-take day at school for the Yearbook. I have to remember to take in the form saying what color background we want and what package of photos we want and pay for them on Monday. A Yearbook for Elementary school!

We all walk back along the street to the apartment and Z seems quite happy and upbeat. I decide he can chose a DVD to watch when we get back and have a cookie. Aren't I good? He chooses Charlie and Lola.

Thursday, November 5, 2009


Today was an important day. Today we re-joined the 21st century. Today we got cable tv, internet and a home phone installed. I am back in the land of Facebook and Twitter. I can email. I can Skype. Fabulous. It transpires that he cable guy likes British television and is a big fan of Top Gear. He says there is a couple that go to his church and they are British and they talk about British shows. Personally I don't like Top Gear and I can't stand Jeremy Clarkson.

Not a lot happened today but we got cable! Today was a good day.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

School Registration

It is time I registered Z to go to the local Elementary school. I downloaded all of the forms before we left the UK and I took him to the doctor to get the vaccinations he needed and to have a medical assessment. When I asked at the doctors office about getting the vaccinations I was told he would need 3 doses and they would be £11 each and that the medical exam would be £75! The vaccinations he needed to get was Hep B and he would not be able to go to school without it. He needed to have 2 doses a month apart and the final one 5 months later. I checked with Carmel Elementary and they said it would be fine if he only had 2 doses and got the final one once he is in the US. We scheduled the medical assessment and I left the form that needed to be completed at the doctors office so that the doctor would know what was required. The whole thing took about 15 minutes and was all the basic height, weight, BP, eyes, ears, chest etc. The last Hep B vaccine does that Z had was the day before we left the UK and by that point I had not been asked for any money to pay for the vaccinations or medical assessment. I did have to pay £5 for a 3 sentence letter on headed paper that said we had all be covered continuously by the NHS from birth. We had to get that letter as the US medical insurance company requested it before they would insure us all. K's paediatrician also copied her entire file relating to her kidney issues for us to bring over to the US. As she has never had to have any treatment for her condition it is not classed as a pre-existing condition and is therefore not exempt.

So I arranged to go down to the Elementary school today to register Z to go there. I got a ride down from fellow British Expat Sian who had been so great already by helping settle in and getting stuff for the apartment. We get down to the school just after 10am and go to the office. As I have already filled in most of the forms needed there are only a few other ones that need to be completed. I need to show proof of residency and id for myself so I show our lease agreement for the apartment and my passport. I forgot id for Z so I need to bring that back on the day he starts. I hand over all the forms and get told that his first day will be on Friday and that he can start to travel by the school bus from Monday. I need to call the transportation department to find out what number bus he needs to get and where the pick up is from. They also give me a copy of the school supply list and all the stuff I need to get him for being in 1st grade. O.M.G! When you are used to having the school provide everything for you it is a bit of a shock that you have to buy loads of stuff. There is also a book rental fee that needs to be paid each year and it changes depending on what grade you are in. A woman in the school office starts talking to Z and tells him that she just loves his accent and listening to him talk. He looks at her with an expression that clearly says 'You are mad!'

When we leave the school Sian offers to take us all to get the school supplies. We head to Target with the list, which is printed on bright orange paper and is very specific about certain things! We manage to find most of the things and improvise some others. We also get a new home phone and a US cell phone for me. I get the kids a few new toys as they were not able to bring over many and then stop off to get a couple things for the apartment, including a new can opener after the one Ben got literally fell apart yesterday as I opened a can of pineapple chunks! We got to the cashier and she starts scanning the barcodes and puts the things in bags for me. She starts chatting to me when she hears my accent and she starts talking loads! The total comes up and I  swipe my card, just over $200, I sign the digital screen and away I go. When I get home I am looking at the receipt and see that the cell phone I got is not on it. I have managed to save almost $100 all because the woman was so busy chatting to me she forgot to scan the barcode. Is it bad that I haven't been back to make the payment? How would I explain it??

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Need A Car.

I know this walking lark is good for you but I am not sure how much more of it I can take! Ben has luckily made contact with a guy that may be able to help. He has seen a couple cars that are in our budget but one of them is a station wagon type thing and I am not entirely sure how I will manage the switch from driving a manual Corsa to an automatic station wagon! He has another viewing tonight after he gets back from work so hopefully he will find something suitable.

I am compiling a list of stuff I need and want to get from the stores. I know there is a difference between need and want so I will be strict with myself. I promise. I need to sort out getting a Indiana State Drivers licence and open a bank account. However to do that I need to get to the BMV and the bank. I have looked on google maps and I am not sure it would be a good idea to walk there! I need to either be taken in a car or rive myself in a car.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Fancy A Walk

Even after yesterdays extremely long walk and the fact we were all exhausted after it all, we go for another long walk today. This time we go in the opposite direction and head towards what will be Z's new school. Carmel Elementary School. It takes about 20 minutes or so walk there there and it is, thankfully, a route that is on pavement so we do not have to walk on the road to get there. When Z does go to school he will probably go by school bus there and back home again.

We get to the school and look around. It is a lot bigger than his previous school in the UK and has a large play area outside. It is also next door to a very new looking and very expensive looking public library. I must make a point of going in there and joining up. We had to leave loads of books behind in the UK and that included most of the kids books. (I managed to bring about half a dozen books including books by Cally Taylor, Lucy Diamond, Freya North, Lola Jaye) I love my books and I am sad I had to leave them behind. I will have to start a new collection here and will eventually get my other books sent over.


Sunday, November 1, 2009

2nd Day in Indiana. 1st Proper Day as Family Again.

Today it was the 4 of us together for a whole day. First time in ages we spent a whole day together. As we don't yet have a car we have to walk everywhere. Ben had gone on a few trips round the area to get his bearings and get to the shops before we arrived so he can show us around. We decide that we need to go to the store as I need a hair dryer. My hair does not look good after it dries naturally. It sticks out all over the place. Not a good look. I also need shampoo as kids shampoo is not proving that effective on my hair either. I look like I have been dragged through a hedge, backwards, several times!

So off we go. We decide to go to Walmart. Now Ben has been there before but he went a route that is not really child friendly. Actually it is not even people friendly as he crossed about 12 lanes of traffic to get there! Not my idea of a pleasant walk with kids even if it is the quicker route. I would rather take longer getting there that risk life and limb! Part of the route to the store is along part of the Monon Trail. It is used by people on bikes, runners and people who just fancy a stroll. When we eventually come off the Monon and are walking by the road, I get the feeling we are being looked at by people in cars and that they are thinking 'What the hell are they doing?!'. Walking is not something that many people do here as everything is so far away. A car really is the best way to go. Another problem walkers encounter is that cars can turn right on a red light so if you are at a crossing and you have the little white man showing you it is ok to cross, a car can still come round the corner and the last thing drivers seem to be expecting is seeing a pedestrian!

After about 40 minutes, and lots of 'I want you to carry me' from K, we arrive at Walmart. It truly is an experience that store. Even though we only were going to buy a couple of things, we ended up with a shopping cart full of stuff. Including a new DVD player so the kids could watch Monsters V Aliens.

We buy all our stuff and head out of the store, still with shopping cart. We go to Subway to have some lunch and work out how we are going to get home. Hadn't really thought it all through had we? Ben had brought his handy ipod touch with him and decided to see if he could get onto a wireless connection outside the T-Mobile store that was a few doors down to look for a taxi company. One result comes up and he calls it. Turns out to be a taxi company for pets. Try another number and it goes to answering machine. Well that is not going to get much business is it? As we stand there we must have looked quite a sight. The 4 of us stood there with about 6 bags full of stuff. After a few minutes this woman appeared and asked us if we needed a ride anywhere. Turns out she had been in the restaurant we were stood next to having lunch with her husband and they thought we were either waiting for someone or had been forgotten by someone and they couldn't just leave us there. So they gave us a lift home. I know it could have been a bit scary. Who accepts a lift from a total stranger? Stranger danger! They were lovely people and the woman gave us her business card. She runs a beauty salon and her husband values homes. They are semi retired and very chatty. If they hadn't offered us a lift then we were going to have a very long walk back home as neither Ben or I would have been able to carry either Z or K on our shoulders. I think next time I go to Walmart I am going to go in a car!

As it is Halloween we take the kids out tick or treating. Z goes as Scooby Doo (minus the tail which seems to  have gotten lost) and K goes as a nurse. We go round the apartments near us and knock on doors of people that have Halloween stuff outside on their porch or stuck to their doors. I have never really been a fan of trick or treating as it seems like begging. The kids enjoy it though and they get quite a bit of stuff in their little pumpkin buckets. We actually had no one come to our door. Ben had bought a big bag of candy and it is all still in the Halloween bowl he got. I have no idea what we are going to do with it. I am not sure if I want to eat it though. Smells very sweet. Now that Halloween is over with the kids are now saying that Christmas is next. I need to explain that next we will have Thanksgiving then Christmas!

14 year olds & Green Cards

Did you know that you need to get a new green card when you turn 14? Do you know the reason why? No really, I'd like to know why. ...