2015…I had no clue what a “trunk-or-treat” was…I just knew that I got a notice from my kids school – and I was to show up with my car and hand out treats.  Welp – I was in for a rude awakening. Parents had their trunks decked out with Halloween decor…you can tell they put some thought into it.  And you can tell…I didn’t.  Exhibit A below:

one balanced mama; trunk or treat
This was my attempt at trunk or treat decorations a few years ago. Sad indeed.

Came a long way in 2017….this year I went with a Super Heroes theme for our costumes and trunk decorations.  I used superhero capes that I already had in AJ’s toy bin from his birthday party.  These are great because they come with masks and they also have a girls set.  Got them on Amazon.

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Presenting…Super Woman, Bat Girl, Incredible Hulk…and The Black Panther…We got ALL the superpowers!!
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The first year I showed up in yoga pants…this is pretty impressive.  Thanks Party City!
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Found some of these gems at Home Goods, Michael’s and Target a few years ago…and they will be used for the next 15 years…
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I actually dreaded going to the pumpkin patch this year. I thought of the heat, the mass crowd and the limited rides that everyone stands in line for – and I begrudgingly put the date on my calendar. Only because my kids always have a blast…cause – kids!

Thankfully, we received an invite by my kids’ art teacher to a program she launched called “Art in the Park.” It was the perfect set up…a gorgeous day in Miami…under a pavilion…at a beautiful  UNcrowded park…overlooking the beach…with plenty of arts and crafts to keep the kids busy. Plus, there was a playground AND a carousel. It was a definite YES on our end…the scene was Crandon Park on Key Biscayne.

This might be the way to go if you also dread heading to the patch. For me – I love getting photos of my kids at a pumpkin patch…nothing is cuter than seeing your babies sitting on pumpkins or trying to pick them up…Exhibit A below.  But this time – I wanted to go a less fussy route while providing an environment where my kids can be creative and still have fun with their friends.   So grab some art supplies…some pumpkins…some kids…and voila! You have a party! Sharing some of the fun from our day!


pumpkin patch photos; one balanced mama
Bobbi Elle’s first pumpkin patch visit…at 9 months old.

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Bobbi Elle with her art teacher Miss Susie, who hosted the day.

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It’s officially the end of the holiday season…at least in my house it is.  Our tree was down on the 30th and all decor was boxed up by December 31st.  While I normally wait until the first weekend of the year…my allergies started kicking in – and suddenly – I could care less about the pine tree smell in my house…I wanted it out!

But going thru my iPhone photos – I can’t help but get a little sad that we have to wait a whole 12 months for that holiday fuzzy feeling.  I don’t remember being as excited about the holidays – until becoming a mom.  Yea – when I was a kid, I had my fair share of excitement when the holidays came around…but it’s different now.  I get to choose how to celebrate, what to do and create traditions for my own family.   To me, the best part of the holidays is being together – surrounded by love, the smell of food, and the sounds of laughter.  Sharing a few of my favorite things that we did as a family this year – and what’s become a tradition around the Metelus household.

Oh Christmas Tree! Once the final Thanksgiving decor is put up – its time to break out the Christmas tree.  This year – I started our decorations early by putting up our lights and adding a Santa and a few snowmen to our yard.  The kids got such a kick out of them.  And since I was having a ton of family over for the Thanksgiving break – I wanted our house to be even more festive.  But I saved the tree for a few days later – because I didn’t want the stress of decorating with 20 people in my home.  Once we got our tree – as we do every year, Cee-Lo’s Christmas Album and Mariah Carey’s Christmas Album is our soundtrack – as the kids (including my nieces and nephew) get in the holiday spirit as we all decorate.

Christmas Celebration with the Mets
Christmas Tree halfway decorated…almost there!

Holiday trip:  With the kids out of school for two weeks, it makes sense for us to do a quick family getaway for the holidays…and this year – it was Disney to take part in Mickey’s Very Merry Christmas Party.  Orlando is always a fun trip for us since we have a ton of famiy there – but taking in the sight’s and sounds of Christmas topped off with Mickey and Minnie – is definitely a winner!

One Balanced Mama Christmas Traditions

One Balanced Mama Christmas Traditions