Friday, May 30, 2014

My Glasses are Full

This is the time of year when my glasses are full with flowers the boys bring me, on a daily basis.
Some might call them weeds.  But I don't think of them that way.

Next week is our first full week of summer vacation, for all three boys.  We have lots of fun activities planned, starting with signing up for the summer reading program at the library.  We also need to get to the duck pond, because that was on our bucket list last summer, and we never found the time!  So we'll make sure to do that first this time around.  Pierce is signed up for swim lessons for the month of June, and Cort has a dance recital. 

What do you have planned for June, readers? 

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

A Little Kitty Comfort

Animals just know.  They know when you're sad or hurt.  Or when you have a temperature of 102* from a raging ear infection.  When you've been up all night crying, and you finally collapse in exhaustion, after having a traumatic experience forcing down yucky antibiotics.
It'll be okay, Reid.  Baxter's got your back.

Monday, May 26, 2014

A Few Thoughts

In his old age, Phoenix is starting to get a little swaybacked and bubble-butted.  I don't hold it against him.
Even after three weeks of treatment last summer, he didn't seem to fully recover from the lyme disease.  He's a little stiff most of the time now, in the pasture, particularly in his hind end.  Sometimes I watch him moving (especially if he's trying to do a tight turn), and I feel bad.  I hope he isn't in too much pain. I miss riding him, but I still enjoy visits with him in the field.  He is sound at the walk at least, so sometimes I'll hop on and we'll just hang out, walking slowly around the arena.  This doesn't seem to bother him - indeed, he seems happy and affectionate over the extra attention.  At some point, I may need to put him on a daily painkiller, but these have their damaging side effects (ulcers, etc.) so I'm holding off for now.

In June, I'll be teaching a human development class at a local college.  I'm excited to get back to teaching.  But it's going to be challenging to manage two part time jobs on top of swim lessons and summer camps and all the other things the boys are up to.  My thinking is that if I can survive the summer, then the boys will all be in elementary school next year, and I can do the part time jobs during those hours, which won't be so bad. 

Speaking of school, the twins are now done with preschool.  We had switched preschools mid-year, and it was the right decision, even though I agonized over it at the time.  We were very pleased with the new preschool, and they thrived there.  Pierce's last day of school is Wednesday.  He had a great first grade year, and loved his teacher. 

Hoping it'll be a great summer, for all of us.  Readers, do you have anything fun planned for the summer?

Friday, May 23, 2014


My cats are traitors.  They were so happy to snuggle with me all winter when there was 20 inches of snow on the ground.  But now that it's warm outside?  I've been abandoned for the lure of mouse and mole hunting.

This is the look I get when I try to call one of them inside to read a book with me.  Can you see the tail, all twitchy with irritation? 

Yeah, we'll see who comes crawling back next October when the nights get cold. 

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Scooters Seeking Catfish Heads

The summer after I graduated from college, Paul and I housesat for my geology professor while looking for our first professional jobs.  I worked at a vet that summer, my favorite job ever.  The professor taught classes out west, and Paul and I cared for his dogs and hamsters. 

There was an old yellow Vespa (Italian scooter) in the professor's garage that hadn't run in years.  Paul got it going again.  I have many happy memories of riding the Vespa down country roads.  There was one ranch in particular that had catfish skulls decorating the tops of each fence post.

Recently my uncle emailed us to see if we'd like a scooter.  He likes to work on engines and such, and when his neighbor crashed hers and bought a new one, she said he could have it.  Uncle George got it up and running again, and brought it up (whenever I have a mechanical question, I always call George!).

We've been having so much fun riding the scooter on the old logging roads on our land.  It goes just slightly faster than I can run.  Actually, I might be able to beat it on foot going uphill, if I sprinted. 
Paul and I have had so much fun reliving our youth as we putter along the dirt paths.  I would be scared to drive a motorcycle, but these scooters are slow and easy to handle.  The only thing missing is a big old ranch with fenceposts topped in catfish heads...

Monday, May 19, 2014

Not Rubbish Boot Scraper

It's not often I buy frivolous items for the house.  It's adequately decorated, and I generally put any extra money towards useful things.  But the other day I found this whimsical Dachshund wrought iron boot scraper at a thrift store.  I wavered.  Back and forth.  And finally, I paid and brought him home.

I have a small collection of wrought iron items - they seem to go well with a log home.  I've always wanted an iron headboard, but it has never been in the budget.  Still, I am quite happy with this unusual stoic-faced little dog - he makes a nice addition to our front porch.

Linked with Rubbish Tuesday

Friday, May 16, 2014

Happiness Is

Happiness is....riding the trolley downtown with your mom and twin brother and your Pre-K class to go to the Science Museum. 

Happiness is....having a butterfly land right on your hand in the butterfly garden.
Happiness is....getting to eat lunch at the Market Building and having strawberry shortcake from the Strawberry Festival for dessert.

Yes, it's good to be four years old. 

Wednesday, May 14, 2014

Grandin Village Earth Day 2014

You all know that Earth Day is near and dear to my heart, and I always enjoy the festival that Grandin Village has each year.  The boys get to plant flowers and do crafts.

The Grandin Theater was having a midnight showing of Pee Wee's Big Adventure.  I can't imagine a universe in which I could make it to a midnight showing right now, but I do remember going to see Big Top Pee Wee at the Grandin in the 80s when it was a dollar theatre.

There was a bouncy house for jumping, and a few snakes for petting.  My boys always seem to enjoy petting snakes.
There were plenty of places to create some unique street art.
 There were free seeds and free samples (a favorite was the organic dark chocolate).  The highlight of the day?  Learning how to scoop and poop.  The dog poop you see was fake.  The boys had a blast putting it in baggies to dispose of it properly. 
Thankfully, no fake dog poop make it home.  This time.

Monday, May 12, 2014

The Community Arboretum

On the one day that all three boys had off for Spring Break, I took them to the local community college, where there is a community arboretum.
 We started with the sensory garden, where there are things to hear, like a fountain, things to feel, like lambs ear, and things to smell, like oregano.

The boys liked seeing so many different styles of plants.

They especially liked the bleeding hearts.  

This field is surrounded by a perfect circle of birches.

And at the end, there is a gazebo.

We counted koi in the ponds.  There were pinwheels all over for Child Abuse Awareness month.

We saw a number of interesting sculptures, like this praying mantis.

A bridge led over to our grand finale....

A hedge maze!
Pierce said, "Wow, Mom, this was way cooler than I thought it would be!"
The boys are already asking when we can go back.

Friday, May 9, 2014

Francie Says

Francie says....

She's all shed out now.
And looking well.  I do believe she's good and healthy.
And the horses down the load are looking much better too, thanks to the help of my readers. 
Do you know?  Taking pictures while lunging a horse in circles may cause extreme dizziness.
I don't recommend it.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Kindergarten Bound

It's hard for me to believe, but in a couple of weeks, Cort and Reid will have their preschool graduation.  Some of you have seen them grow up on this blog, as I started writing when they were a mere four months old.
Over Spring Break, I took them to their future elementary school and did their assessment tests.  We registered for riding the bus.  I filled out all their paperwork. 

In a minute, I will blink again, and they will be climbing up the bus steps, backpacks thumping along the way.  August will be here in no time.   My sweet baby boys.  How did they ever get so big?

Monday, May 5, 2014

Butterfly Sitting

Cort and Reid's preschool teacher wanted to know if we'd like to bring the class butterfly project home for Spring Break.  They were in chrysalis form - having already shifted from their caterpillar state while the class watched, intrigued.  The twins were so excited to be able to bring them home - it was a huge honor!

 Cort sat by the butterflies while they were hatching, and told them that he hoped they would come visit him after they were free.  Cort kept saying, "Do you remember when you were just a little caterpillar?"
 Once all six hatched, we fed them oranges and strawberries for a couple of days before we let them go outside. 
You know who else really liked the butterflies?  This stinker.  And I don't think he was telling them stories about coming to visit once they were free either.  It's a good thing we don't have any pet birds...

Friday, May 2, 2014

In Training

Look at that stride!

Kind of wish my own running always felt that good!