November 10, 2008 12:00 PM

It wasn’t easy, but on Oct. 22 Britney Spears, 26, slipped by the paparazzi to buy Halloween outfits for sons Preston, 3, and Jayden, 2, at Sherman Oaks, Calif., party shop Aahs. “We were able to sneak out,” she blogged. “[I] had a great day!” Then Spears, who secured visitation rights in July, giddily picked pumpkins with the boys the next afternoon.

“We’re so happy she gets to be with them,” says a family friend. (Meanwhile Kevin Federline is “lying low and enjoying being a dad,” his rep tells PEOPLE.) “She really loves her kids. She’s getting it together, and thank God for it.”

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