Quinn spent part of the evening with me while I was sewing in our bedroom. He's very into the dump truck he and Chris picked up today, carting a load of bells back and forth on the table.

I bought a giant bag of candy from Costco last week so I filled this back up today. We have plenty of candy for the next few days, at least.

 Lorelei turned 4 this week! She's getting so big. Her birthday party was today and tons of fun.

Quinn got to hit his first pinata.
 And there were fun photo standees that Dan's mom made. 
Overall Quinn had a great time, even running around outside despite it being freezing!

We woke up and headed out to Quinn's swim lesson in the morning. Chris dropped us off to do shopping so we had a little time before we got picked up. Quinn was very excited to run on the indoor track.
It rained pretty heavily all day today, which meant the outdoor Halloween activities we were going to do were canceled. I spent a big chunk of the afternoon working on my costume instead. Quinn watched the Trolls movie for the umpteenth time as a refresher for a birthday party tomorrow.
By 5:30pm Quinn was out. It's been a busy few days for the little guy.

My cousin Fredde is staying with my parents for the week while visiting from Sweden. We have a pretty busy weekend so I took Friday off to go and spend the day with my family.

As a cool bonus, Chris's best friend who lives in China (also named Chris) was in the state for a week so he drove up and visited for a bit as well.
It took awhile, but Quinn did warm up eventually. He had a lot of fun outside driving his cars and eating raspberries.
It's also Fredde's birthday, so had a nice dinner to celebrate.
And a tasty Swedish-style birthday cake, which features whip cream and strawberries instead of frosting. That actually made the cake feel lighter to me. I really liked it that way. So did Quinn (minus the strawberries).  It was a nice visit and we will have to get over to Sweden sometime and visit him.

A co-worker is out this week so we are placing a bunch of these all over his workspace.

This was a pretty tasty snack first thing in the morning.

I'm trying to do more quiet time with Quinn before bed. We've been alternating between reading and watching a show before he goes and sleeps in his room. He considers laying in our bed a real treat.

I do not like white chocolate, but the peanut butter in this almost makes up for it. Almost. I should have read the label more carefully when I snagged it.

We made monster cookies with some candy melts. I was curious to see what it was like working with them. They are easy enough, but taste too close to white chocolate for anything I'd ever eat. The other members of our household however...
...taste tested them. The candy coating met with everyone's approval.
There was devastation when one of the eyes fell off. He didn't believe us at first that they were candy. It took some coaxing but eventually he ate the eyes and all was better.


Even though going every Saturday is a hassle, Quinn is making progress with his swim lessons. He still wont put his face in the water, but he is willing to do other things, like jump, that he wasn't before.

 After a dramatic reading of Green Eggs and Ham, Quinn agreed to try green eggs.

He was not impressed.
I refused to eat any more and ate peanut butter toast instead.

There is always a lot of silly, squirmy action when the toddler cuddles in our bed.

Even on bandaids.

Flipped through several pattern catalogs looking for a Maleficent-like robe. Not a lot of success.

These are the types of photos you find on your phone when the toddler gets a hold of it.

We drove to the east side of the state to visit family today. Our first stop was at Grandma Karath's house, where Quinn immediately ran to the back of the apartment to hunt for toys. He found several new ones to play with.
At my parent's house we had a late lunch and exchanged birthday gifts. With 3 birthdays in less than a month mid-September and early October are always a busy gift-giving time-frame.
Quinn helped his grandmother open her gift.
And his grandfather. It's pretty exciting to unwrap anything, even if you helped wrap it a few days earlier!

Leki's basket broke off of the top of his tower earlier this week. He's finally taken to napping on top of the square near the top, which is almost as high as the basket was.

He had a lot of fun laying in his merman tail arguing that it isn't time for bed.

Today was the funeral for a co-worker today. I hadn't worked with him for very long, but he was a nice older gentleman who always helped when I asked. After work we all went out for drinks and food at a nearby bar in his honor.

I decided to try running on a treadmill today as opposed to the track I normally use. It was a very disorientating experience after 30 minutes of running. I'm sure I'd get used to it but I didn't really like how I felt after I got off the machine.

I tried to do yoga with the toddler. He was an interesting obstacle.

I'm slowly making progress in the Metroid Returns DS game.

 Today I finally upgraded the snail mail notifier we've been using since 2012. The original setup (on the left) involved an Arduino Uno, ethernet shield, and a TPLink-701 router modified to run OpenWrt. There were wifi alternatives, but they were expensive at the time and this was a cheaper solution.

This newer version (on the right) involves just an Adafruit Feather HUZZAH with ESP8266 which is a board with built in wifi. Adafruit's Feather boards are arduino-compatible, so the changes in code were minor to account for the different wifi chipset.  
Chris wanted to keep the original box even though the device footprint is much smaller. Quinn helped by typing on his computer and playing with some switches I set up for him to toggle. He had a lot of fun, and now we have a smaller and less power hungry device for mail notifications.

I finally pulled the carrots we started growing several months ago. Using the little City Pickers box we picked up earlier this summer I knew these wouldn't grow very big, but I thought they'd be a little bigger.

My work has a lot of fun activities they promote. This month it's related to Art Prize and people are encouraged to create something. I don't sit by the rest of the PMO team so the programmers and their group always adopt me for these events, and this time was no exception.

Our theme was space dinosaurs and everyone painted something (thanks to a co-workers large stash of spray paint and stencils). Mine is a pterodactyl and Saturn, in honor of Cassini.

Today is my birthday! A co-worker brought in these delicious pumpkin cupcakes. I ate several!
 When I got home we celebrated, complete with cake. Quinn was very excited.
The best gift was the card Chris made. He wrote down everything Quinn while they were working on a message. This is the best! I love "mommy will be happy with her photo of her white car", which was included with the card.

Chris took the car today so I did a loop around some parking lots at work. It's not as nice as walking in downtown Grand Rapids, but it will work.

Its nice to see the sunset, even if it is from behind the wheel of a car this time.

The toddler spent a big part of the morning telling me he'd like to get rid of this blue car for a nice, battery-powered red car he saw over the weekend.

 I finished the C25K program earlier in the summer and I've been running several times a week since. Today was the first 5K I've signed up for.
 Quinn and Chris came out to watch and see the festivities 
My only goal was to complete it with running only, which I did. I averaged a little over 12 minute miles and I'm ok with that. 

If it had been 10 degrees cooler that would have been awesome, but 65-70 degrees is not too bad.

We went to a friend's wedding reception today. Lynn looked wonderful and her husband is delightful. I'm so happy for her!