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Category Archives: kids

The year was 1977.

My kids with the first vehicle that I ever drove… a 1977 Ford truck.  She has huge holes in the floorboard, the driver’s door won’t open from the outside, and I’m pretty sure there are critters that live behind the seat.  But she still runs just as good as when I drove her down the driveway at age 11.

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In search of the great pumpkin

A visit to the pumpkin patch always makes me think of the classic show “It’s the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown.”  You know, where Linus convinces Sally that if they spend the entire night in the pumpkin patch, they will get to see the Great Pumpkin rise from the patch and bring presents to all of the good little boys and girls.

Sally’s rant at the end is my favorite.  “I was robbed!  I spent the whole night waiting for the Great Pumpkin, when I could have been out for tricks or treats.  Halloween is over, and I missed it!  You blockhead.  You kept me up all night waiting for the Great Pumpkin, and all that came was a beagle.  I didn’t get a chance to go out for tricks or treats.  And it was all your fault.  I’ll sue!  YOU OWE ME RESTITUTION!”

I love Sally.  :)   And I love the pumpkin patch.

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We’ve been doing some partying.

I’ve felt the sting of 1,000 Nerf darts.

And we found some new ways to beat the heat.

Nothing says summer fun like two sweaty kids and a sopping wet dog!

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Summer so far.

Today is the 36th day of summer break.  There are 42 more days to go (in case you were wondering).  Here’s how we’ve been occupying our time so far… Torin went to a fabulous camp for girls where they swam and played tennis every day.  She is now lobbying for us to build a pool and a tennis court in our backyard.

MacGyver had surgery.  It was a very personal matter, and he doesn’t want to talk about it.

Dave turned 45.  He doesn’t want to talk about that, either.

We’ve had some play dates with friends.

We’ve put some miles on the teeter totter.  (Yeah, it takes two of them sitting on one side to balance me out.  And I don’t want any smart aleck comments about that.)

And finally, if you’ve seen me lately and wondered why my hair looks like it’s in knots, it’s because Torin has been practicing her braiding skills.  (However, as of today, I have decided that I’m getting scammed.  I think she really does know how to braid.  She just enjoys tying knots in my hair.)  The end.


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This is a little hard for me to talk about, but I have to do it.  All of you know about MacGyver (and by “all of you,” I’m referring to the three people who actually follow my blog).  We got him in January when he was just 8-weeks-old.  Over the next four months, I complained about his digging, his barking, his foul smelling crate, and don’t even get me started on how much money he was costing us… but secretly, I was becoming attached to him.  He was pretty well-mannered the first couple of months that we had him.  I took him to puppy training school, and he learned the routine.  He was always aggressive with the kids, but I just figured that was normal puppy energy, and I blamed myself for not making sure he got enough exercise.  I thought if he got more exercise, he wouldn’t be as aggressive.  While the exercise may have been part of it, he clearly was developing a very strong, dominant personality.  It finally got to a point where the kids couldn’t be alone with the dog unsupervised, and they could only play for a few minutes before he started jumping and nipping/biting their legs and arms.  With summer coming on, I knew it wasn’t going to work.  The kids were going to be home full-time, and I didn’t want to have to worry about dog injuries.

I called the breeder where we got MacGyver and asked if she would help us find him a new home.  She said that she would take him back and offer us another dog if we wanted to try a different puppy who had a much  more laid-back personality.  That’s when Dash entered the picture.  When I made the final decision to get rid of MacGyver, I never intended to get another dog.  However, the breeder assured me that Dash was great with little kids and had a temperament that would be a much better fit for our family.  Plus, the kids were BEGGING me to try again.  Call me crazy.  I gave in.

Meet Dash.  He is a 7-month-old goldendoodle, which means he’s half golden retriever and half poodle.

We didn’t pick the name, and since we are still on a trial basis with him, we’re still calling him Dash.  The name Dash makes us think of a few different things…

We’ve only had him for two days, but so far, he’s been a sweetie.  He is very gentle and calm, which is a huge change from what we’re used to.

We still miss MacGyver.  He was one ornery little booger, but we still loved him.  I’m sure he’s having a big wild party with all of his friends back in Bucksnort.  For now, though, we are enjoying Dash.  To be continued…

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Just because.

Homework and piano practice.  Two totally routine and mundane activities.  But tonight I felt like capturing them on my camera.  This is the hardest part of the day for us.  Kids are tired, hungry, and not in the mood to do more work.  I am short-tempered and spread thin.  I have been trying really hard lately to have a better attitude and make this an enjoyable time for all of us (or at least as enjoyable as homework can possibly be)!

After I put the dog outside for being a little too “helpful” with the homework, I came back in to discover that Parker had gotten sweaty and had taken his shirt off.  Whatever.  I support any move that will help him get the work done.

Parker is Star Student next week, so he’s working on his poster that will hang in the classroom.  (I should’ve known better than to give him the mechanical pencil.  Of course he had to test how much lead was still in there.)

While Parker was in the kitchen, Torin was practicing for her piano lesson.

She can now play “Amazing Grace” better than I can.  Whenever I sit down at the piano, that’s my go-to song.  And now it’s her go-to song.

And finally… it appears that the dog got mad for being placed outside and proceeded to roll around in his big new water dish.  Looks like he’ll be staying outside for a little while longer.

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March update

Look!  In my backyard!  It’s a real FENCE!  I am beginning to get my house (and my life) back.  The beast now has a secure place to roam and misbehave, and we are all much happier.  MacGyver’s favorite activity is to dig underneath the deck and then rub his muddy face on my French door, but that’s okay.  Parker has learned to Windex.  The kids love going out to play with him, and he loves trying to sneak back in the house when they attempt to come back inside.  He is growing like a weed.  Come to think of it, all three of them are.


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