Last week we returned home from a week long family vacation in Palm Springs, California feeling refreshed and completely high on life. It wasn't until Thursday evening that we were abruptly brought back to reality... while putting the kids to bed our home was entered by strangers through our unlocked back door. They stole our wallets, my computer, my work bag and Jeff's watch. Outside of the back door being left open, their presence went unnoticed. I thought perhaps Jeff had accidentally left the door open after he took the trash out earlier that night. It wasn't until later, when I went to take out my laptop to do some work, that I realized my bag was missing. And so was Jeff's wallet. And his watch. And then it clicked - someone else had been there. We called the cops and they took a report and screened for prints. After searching the property they found they had also gone into our garage through the side door (also unlocked) and riffled through both of our cars where they didn't find much, thankfully.
I've got tough skin and I'm not shaken by much, but this has certainly gotten to me. I'm having a hard time shaking the fact someone felt bold enough to enter our home while we were home and likely watched us as we moved about the house in order to time their move appropriately. I feel completely violated and angry that we live in a world where we have to lock our doors and close our blinds for fear of someone taking what's ours and infringing on our privacy.
I'm very glad we didn't encounter them for fear something worse than stolen items would have taken place. The cops believe it was a pair working together. What if we would have surprised them in the act? What if they had a gun? What if Jeff had run after them? These are all things that have been keeping me up at night. Friends are suggesting we get a security system which is likely, but I'm sincerely upset we even have to consider it.
We write about a lot of wonderful and fun things on our blog and I understand this story doesn't fit the usual bill. However, this is part of our world right now. I'm feeling challenged to continue thinking the best of people but will likely change my habits to lock all of our doors, all of the time.
So that sucks. You know what else sucks?! Raking leaves in freezing temperatures! Jeff and I teamed up this weekend and did our first round of leaf raking for the season. However, our trees are still pretty full of leaves and I expect we'll be out there in snow pants here pretty soon.
Just before vacation we celebrated Halloween with family at John Ball Zoo for their annual 'Zoo Goes Boo' event. This is the 3rd annual (read more about 2015 and 2016) Kladder Halloween gathering that doubles as Jeff's Dad's birthday celebration. Everyone dresses up in costume for the zoo followed by games and food back at the lake. Sure, the kids love it but it's possible the adults enjoy it just as much if not more.
On actual Halloween Jeff and I hosted a few friends and my parents at our place for trick-or-treating. I made chili and the kids decorated Halloween cupcakes. We all took turns handing out candy on the porch to the approximately 350 trick-or-treaters. We ran completely out of candy and had to shut off our porch light 10 minutes before trick-or-treating officially ended. It was a good night.
On Sunday, October 29th we dedicated Thomas at church. We did the same for Natalie in February 2016. Having both kids dedicated means our commitment to raising them to know God and to help guide them in growing their faith to the best of our ability. Together, with our parents and church community, we vowed our commitment to this. The dedication was naturally followed by a small celebration of cake and cocktails!
I'm chomping at the bit to bust out the Christmas decor and the only thing stopping me is tall, dark, handsome and goes by the name of 'Jeff.' I'm so envious of those who've gotten the jump on me! Come Thanksgiving weekend you'll find me baking cookies and hanging garland! Enjoy these next few weeks before the holiday season really kicks in. Till next time!
POSTSCRIPT - Stuff we're into lately...
- Rocket Fizz - A soda pop and candy shop that I just discovered is a chain! There is one in Knapps Corner and we also checked out the one in Palm Springs last week! They have everything!
- City Built Brewing - Excellent new spot just north of downtown on Monroe. Extremely family friendly (there's a kid's corner) and surprising and fantastic menu of Puerto Rican food.
- Melissa & Doug Water Wow - Keep your kids busy for at least 30 mins. Great for airplanes!