07 November 2016

Band and Choir Concert

(This is a redo, a bit late because I didn't notice it didn't post when I posted it.)

Adam is in band again this year, and Carus has joined the choir, and so the concert at the beginning of the year was for both of them.  

The fall concert shows what the kids have been learning so far that year and gives a little bit of a baseline of their skills for you to see how far they come by the end of the year concert in May.

Carus is in the middle front - with the light purple hair.

Adam is just to the right of that cello in the middle.  This was taken during set up for the next performance as the tromboners (and Adam) are in the back and you can't really see them/him (he's in the middle of 3 or 4 tromboners and well hidden from cameras).

Clip of the choir

Clip of the choirs, orchestra, and band. 

Clip of just the band.

24 October 2016

Going ons

I should probably update this more often so I didn't feel like I had to make a list of all that is happening.  Lots is happening, some good, some bad and some it's still to be determined good or bad...

Gah, I just looked at recent posts to see what has been said and I've got not a whole lot for a base level.  Let's just break it down into per person or subject.

Me: I'm doing well, but at the same time not well at all.  My health is fine or steady or whatever. My plantar fasciitis is still killing me most days and I'll get it doing okay then push myself to do more/exercise more because I know that if I build up a higher baseline than what I'm currently at it will be better in the long run, but then I pay for it for a few days.  Guess where I'm at in that cycle right now - the point where I want to whine and cry.

Emotionally, I'm all over the place.  I'm stressed and anxious, but don't feel like I have enough to be stressed or anxious about, which makes me feel guilty and then I get all anxious over that. So yeah, I'm in a pretty shitty spiral and doing my best to stay afloat. I don't feel like I'm juggling all my responsibilities well, but my kids are fed and loved, my pets are fed and loved, I still have a job, and everyone is wearing clean (albeit wrinkled) laundry so there's that. Work is fine, they love me and I mostly love my job, but I'm irritated as fuck over some recent unnecessary changes that make my job more difficult and don't feel like I can say anything.

Carus is doing really well with Dusty now, which has alleviated some of my anxiety about how Dusty and Carus would handle showing, but Scout might need to find a new home which is breaking my heart. I love him as much as Carus - he's basically my first horse too - and I don't want to take him from her, but if we get to the point of leasing/buying a horse for Carus to finish her 4H career with, it has to be a horse she can actually show and Scout can't show. (He is doing okay physically, so could handle some showmanship and probably some trail, but not the amount of work needed for equitation.) Enter ALL of the guilt with that situation and then multiply it by a billion.  I don't know. A lot can happen between now and when Scout needs to find a new home, but for now the prospect is debilitating.

Speaking of Carus, now an actual update on her and not just my anxieties about her.  Carus is doing well.  She's adjusting to high school extremely well and is doing okay in classes (there has been some confusion on how the teacher wants answers formulated that have affected her grades).  Socially she is focusing on friends and making good friends and ignoring the bad friends and those that talk crap.  I think her self-confidence has helped this aspect immensely and I'm glad that all the steps I've taken to help her there have done their job. She's excited to turn 15 and get her permit so she can learn to drive, like now.  She's excited for shows this year and is ready to get Dusty in the show ring. I'm very proud of all the hard work she's put in on herself.

My anxieties about Adam have dulled... at least until we get closer to graduation and looking at going to college stuff. So for like 5 minutes? And I'll probably end up hyperventilating in a ball in the corner when he gets his license and takes his car for a drive all by himself. Shit, I'm almost there just typing that out. See above - RE: I'm a mess.

Adam is skating through his senior year, though he'd probably tell you otherwise because he is busy and doesn't have as much downtime as he'd probably like.  He only has to get 2 credits to graduate but he's taking a full day of classes.  He's taking two different culinary classes as well as band and astronomy "for fun".  I think his physics class counts as a credit, but to him it's still "for fun".  His senior project is about managing a play; the first play of the school's play year - High School Musical - and that has been keeping him busy and not really working much.  He's averaging about 20 hours a week for work which is enough for his car payment and insurance.  Now for him to just get his license; he just has to schedule a time (there's a waiting period).  The other night he realized that he's an adult and doesn't need permission to get a tattoo or buy lottery tickets and thought that was fun; and he just got his first ballot in the mail. Woohoo adulthood - which shit head politician should be president?

Robert is working now.  He finally got released from medical for his back injury and was able to get a job and has found one that he can do without causing too much pain which PHEW because I don't need that added worry back in.  He'd tell me that I don't have to worry cause it's his back, but that's not how it works.  He's looking into surgery to fuse those discs that are bulging in the near-ish future.  Approvals need to be sent and received and steps taken to get there. I'm also worried about that.  At least I have a theme for my life right now - worry and anxiety all day long with a side of bonus anxiety for those extra worrying times. For now, he's dealing while working a lot; he works 12 hour shifts 3 days one week and 4 days the next though right now it's just 4 days a week as there is a ton of over-time available.

Blargh. This post feels weird, but it's what I got for now.

12 September 2016

Horse Fair

How has it already been more than two months since Horse Fair?!  I'm woefully behind in sharing updates, but I will be working to remedy that as well as attempting - yet again - to get back into the habit of updating/journaling/etc on a regular basis.  Maybe this time I will be successful. Only time will tell!

All the photos from fair can be found on my Facebook page in this album

We missed Scout so much during fair.  Or at least I did.  Carus did have working with DJ to distract her. She did break down during senior night where they were reading speeches written by the graduating seniors, who wouldn't be back the next year, and a couple of those kids thanked their first horses as being the reason they fell in love with horses. It hit her right in the feels and she said that she worries he won't make it to her senior night. I've reassured her that 4 years isn't that far off and he's still doing well so we can be hopeful.  She's planned out how he will be the one that takes her into the arena for senior night - walking together or riding. I hope that she gets that.

If you missed it - Scout is now retired from shows (mostly).  He was diagnosed, officially, June 1st with sidebone (click here for Google search for sidebone where you can find all sorts of info if interested) in his left front foot.  He's on daily pain management as well as some joint supplements and he got a whole month off.  When his month was up and I let Carus ride him at a slow walk around the arena for 10 minutes I held my breath hoping so hard that it wouldn't cause him pain and make him limp again.

It didn’t.  They can walk and trot and play together again, and he really tears it up around the pasture with Dusty! Yay! 

For Fair, Carus was able to borrow DJ, her 4H leader's horse, a 25-year-old Quarab (Quarter horse and Arabian horse cross) who was a drill horse for many years.  He likes to go-go-go and can do so all day long and then some.  Carus worked hard for the 2 months leading up to Fair to get used to him, him used to her, and keep him calm and listening for the slow work that would be required of them for fair.

We are so proud with how Carus handled herself during fair in so many ways, but first I'll explain how so with DJ.

DJ is what one would call a hot horse.  He likes to go and go fast because that is what he was trained to do.  Carus would take him into the arena and ask him to stand still for a moment and he didn't understand why because usually when he got into an arena he would be moving until he left that arena.  She still stuck it out, kept her patience, and tried her best.  She never left one of her classes defeated by a less than perfect outcome. After her trail class where he did a bunch of pawing at the ground, trying to run off course, and even a little crow-hop, she left the arena laughing and said, "Well, that could've gone better."  She didn’t get any blue ribbons this year, but still was very happy with her efforts and so glad to have the opportunity to work with this adorable little energizer bunny horse. DJ taught her quite a bit in their 2 months together.

This was also our first year with the new 4H group as last year's group disbanded.  Carus was the only member this year with prior 4H Horse experience.  The other two members where younger than Carus, in their first year of 4H, and in their first year of showing horses.  (There was a fourth member, but she ended up dropping out mid year.)  Carus was supportive of them, a great leader to them, and helped them at a drop of a hat without complaint (mostly) even though we got close to 100 degree temps (again) and the days were long and busy, occasionally feeling like they were never-ending. 

4H is about to start up again this year, and Carus has a few goals to work towards.  She hopes to show Bailey the mini-donkey this year, show a horse (which is currently planned to be Dusty if Dusty can handle it), become a better rider, maybe show in some English classes, and she wants to earn the most points.

(Each horse 4H member is required to earn 100 points to be allowed to participate in Horse Fair. They get those points by participating in 4H activities, other horse shows, educational clinics and competitions, and community service/volunteer work.  Last year the winner got 470ish points and Carus wants to get 500 at least.  Since we have a limited number of shows we can attend - which does limit her earning ability a smidge - this can be a bit of a challenge, but we'll try.)

More to come. . . 

02 September 2016

Happy 18th (!!) Birthday, Adam!

Adam is 18!

I can't believe it has been 18 years, and at the same time I can. It's gone by so slowly but too quickly. You are officially an adult, but it doesn't feel like you are quite yet. At least to me.  

I'm not sure what will make you an adult.  Will it be you graduating this year? Or getting your license?  Maybe the trip to DC on your own. Or seeing you vote in your first election. 

I am so proud of who you are. Every day and every year I become more and more proud of you. You are kind and considerate, responsible and empathetic, smart and witty, funny and sweet.  Your sense of humor and love for puns and dad jokes are the best.   

You're the best son, brother, friend, and person that I could have hoped for.

Thanks for making us (your parents) look good. 

01 September 2016

First Days of School

First days of school 2016

Carus went first as she is a Freshman! She started 8/29/16.

Robert took the photo for me as I had to go to work before she was ready to go.  I thought she looked excited and happy and that made me feel less anxious for her (she's my baby, I was anxious for her) but apparently the grin is because Daddy made her laugh.  Whatever, it works.

The better news is that this week has been great for her! She's starting to find her way around a very large school with classes all over the place and seeing old friends and meeting new friends and having a good time.  

Adam started the next day - Senior year! 

He's all same ole same ole to the high school experience. He likes that this is his final year, but I think it is making him a bit anxious because now everyone expects him to have a plan of what to do next and he hasn't decided.*  And on top of school, he's been working every evening this week and isn't home much except to sleep and is tired and not exactly enthused.  Welcome to adulthood kid, it sucks. 

The first few weeks will be an adjustment - they're both exhausted at bedtime and fall asleep easily.  It helps (or doesn't help depending on how you look at it) that they are walking to and from school (maaaybe a mile - maybe) to avoid dealing with 1-1/2 hour bus ride that comes when they want to get up (leave at 6:30 to ride the bus or get up at 6:30 and walk).

Meanwhile, I can't believe they're both in high school.  My baby is a freshman. My oldest is a senior who will be graduating this year.  This is weird and too soon and just really, really weird. 

*So far the plan is to go to community college and start the basic prerequisites and see what peaks his interest and go from there.

08 June 2016

Scout update

So, starting in March or so, about a month after his abscess blew, Scout started having this lameness.  He would limp off and on and often only at a trot and sometimes if we walked him for a long time before trotting he would be fine and other times he wouldn't.  We'd give him a week off, then ride, and then he'd limp 2 days later.

We thought maybe it was a residual abscess or another one.  Or maybe it was arthritis - he is older.

His owner had his shoes removed and that seemed to help a little and then it didn't.  We added MSM for joint support and that seemed to help a little and then it wasn't helping any more.  There was still the occasional limp.

Meanwhile May crept up on us and the three scheduled shows for May and Scout was still limping.  I went to cancel the first show and then Carus was lent a horse for shows for May so shows were back on but Scout was sitting them out.

It was weird not having Scout with us and people asked about him at the 4H show - Scout and Carus were famous.  We missed him.  I missed him more than I thought I would.

Then he was still limping so he couldn't do the other two shows in May, which we turned into just one more show and Carus still borrowed DJ and they did well, but they're not Scout and Carus so it wasn't the same.

Scout got a chiropractic appointment and that determined there might be something more going on so Scout got a vet appointment for x-rays and there was suspicion of ringbone.

The vet appointment finally came and I held out so much hope that it was just a little arthritis and the vet would have a program that would help him and he'd be better in no time.

It wasn't ringbone. It was ringbone's cousin - sidebone.

There's no cure.

Scout is now a retired show horse.

He is getting a rest while the meds and supplements the vet started him on get into his system and then he might be cleared for light riding.  No trotting.  No shows.  Definitely no loping.  He should be fine for trail rides or walks around the arena. Hopefully.

I'm devastated.

I feel weird for saying devastated, but it's the best way to describe it I think.  I don't want him hurting so it's not like I want to just dose him up on painkillers and keep him moving until he completely breaks down. But I don't want it to be over for him already.

He's fine as a pasture pet.  Carus and I still adore him and still love on him and take care of him and I don't want that to change.

Carus wanted to do 4H and OHSET (Oregon High School Equestrian Team) and while Scout wasn't an option for OHSET, they were really starting to hit their stride with 4H and I'm sad to see that end. Carus doesn't have the same connection with the other horses she's been working with (DJ and Dusty*) as she has with Scout.  I knew there was a connection, but to see the contrast between horses is amazing and interesting.  Ask my Grandma about the connection. She saw Carus ride DJ first and was all, 'that's a pretty little horse. I like him' and then saw Carus with Scout doing their follow the leader routine and apparently now has been telling everyone about the connection.

There are some options for her for next year and things are in the works for considerations and options.  They're on hold while we prepare for Horse Fair at the end of this month though so my patience is being put to the test.

I'm a planner though, and this lack of concrete plans is driving me nuts. Figured putting this all down on the blog will be good for looking back on and for a venting of sorts. Now that it's out there maybe I can relax a little.  We have all summer ahead of us.  Who knows what next month will bring...

(DJ and Dusty are awesome horses in their own ways, not trying to say they suck or anything.)

05 May 2016

Happy Birthday Leia

Happy birthday Leia Monkey Puppy, my #chickendog

She turned 5 today.  

01 May 2016

Adam's Prom

Adam and a group of friends traveled to downtown Portland, to Portland Art Museum, for prom Saturday where they met more friends and Junior and Senior prom (combined) was experienced.

These kids are the cutest! I love how bright and vibrant their dresses and hair are and how some matched their dresses to their hair!  They escorted each other.

I love how much Adam enjoys dressing up. He owns this suit, we just bought him a new tie, pocket square, vest combo for prom.  And I know I'm biased but I think he looks spiffy.

I'm making spiffy have a come back saying. 

These guys were king and queen together in Adam's last Shakespeare play - Midsummer's Night Dream. Most of Adam's prom friend group was in that play. I'm glad he's found his clique. It makes high school bearable when you have good friends to suffer through it with you. 

22 April 2016

RIP Wilbur

60_366 02-29-12

We said good-bye to Wilbur today. We knew with Timmy going that Wilbur probably wouldn't be too far behind. What Timmy had was very contagious (so yeah, Simba has it too...sigh) and Wilbur was already slowing down on his eating and drinking so we knew. Doesn't make it easier... just makes it less surprising.

We tried to make the call at the right time, and I think we did.  We made *the* appointment the day after he stopped eating. I spent his last day force feeding soggy canned cat food down his throat. You know it's bad when you can force feed a cat and not get scratched.

The kids and I said our good-byes and Robert took him in by himself as I had to work.

Wilbur was a little slow and always skitsy.  The first 2 years we barely saw him as he hid in the closet all day and would only come out at night to play chase with Timmy. After a few months he would also borrow deep under the covers - but don't move your feet or he'd get them. Once he got out and it took us three days and a borrowed live animal trap to get him back, and Timmy's supervision of course.

We put a ledge on the window sill for him in our house in Aloha because he kept trying to sit on the sill and would fall off every time he started to doze.

He LOVED that ledge and we finally got to know our cat. He TALKED so much. We would all have conversations with him - meow? meow. ME-OW?! Mow.  And he would chirp to birdies outside.

After we moved out here, he hid under the bed for about a week and then he came out of his shell so to speak. He was often in the living room laying on the back of the couch or curled up in one of the kids beds - which was new. Visitors very rarely saw him as he'd stay hidden when they were around, but he really opened up and became less shy.

He loved fresh water and was really insistent when asking for the faucet in the bathroom to be turned on for him.

His only gross cat thing was he always had hairballs and would find the best place to leave it for you to step on. I think he bathed himself and Timmy and that's why he had so much hairballs. But his purrs were the loudest, his meows sounded like actual conversations, and his sweet slightly cross-eyed face was the best.  He came as a package deal when we adopted Timmy, probably cause they knew shy kitties have a hard time being placed.  I'm so glad he did.

17 March 2016


 We're replacing the doors and trim in the house to a more craftsman style. It's a project that has been on Robert's to-do list since we bought the house but other projects and funds have delayed it. He has spent months mocking up the trim and redoing it and just as many months debating the style of doors he wanted. I would have preferred my kitchen counters replaced but I know this will be an improvement too (just not as much as new counters! I hate those things. So much!) and is a cheaper project.  I've been just letting him do most of the deciding, though the third (or fourth?) revision of the trim style is the last one. Dammit, that looks good too just leave it already. (I do like this last version the best.)

We have three pocket doors in the house, two in our bedroom for the closet and the bathroom, and one in the kitchen. They are being replaced as well to match.

Robert has replaced all of the bedroom doors and the kid's bathroom door (ours and Adam's pictured here) and the closet pocket door.  The master bath door is all that's remaining and it was waiting because of some roller smoothness issues discovered with the closet door.  He removed all the trim around the door a few days ago.  When closing the door, if you're not careful, the door can swing out a little bit and get caught on the wall.  You can't open the door from inside the bathroom when it's stuck because there's nowhere to grip to pull the door towards you the few millimeters it needs before you can slide it back into the pocket in the wall.

I've gotten stuck in the bathroom like four times already. 

16 March 2016

Growing Like A Puppy

The last time I was able to put Chewie on this scale. Taken on March 1, 2016, and allowing for his wiggling we got his weight at 10 lbs 12 oz. 

These were taken today, March 15, 2016. He has had his first vet visit now - last week where he was 13 lbs 8 oz - and we estimate him closing in on 20 lbs.

We still all adore him. (Except for Yoda and Simba, the former not being interested and the latter deeply suspicious of his intentions.) Especially Leia who watches out for him and comes to us any time he is whining in his kennel.  We started covering his kennel because the heater vent would blow on him and wake him and Leia has repeatedly removed the blanket so she can make sure baby is okay. They play together all day long. Chase, keep away, tug of war, and especially wrestle. 

He can sleep through the night, but he isn't doing it on a regular basis. Unfortunately. And he likes to get up and beg for breakfast between 4 am and 6 am.  During the day he really likes to curl up and nap on Carus's bed while she is doing school work.

Potty training is going well... for the most part. I can be in charge and he won't have a single accident and then I put someone else in charge and 5 seconds later he has piddled on the floor.  While at work the other day he peed on my pillow on Robert's watch. His cues aren't always in a timely manner - he has peed while whining to be let out in the same second several times.  But he is only 9 weeks old so I'm not expecting the world.

In related news, Robert and I are going to buy a carpet shampooer. 

09 March 2016

Clever Title

Hmm, how to start this post?  I mean, I used all my creativity up on the title already, what is left for the rest of this? 

Things are going.... well, they're going somewhere. Half the time I feel like I'm doing okay and the other half of the time I feel like I'm struggling to breathe. I keep forgetting my doctor gave me a prescription for anxiety meds and I have a full blown anxiety attack before I remember.  

I joined a group on Facebook that is dedicated to cleaning tips and tricks on a recommendation from a friend after asking about front load washers and dryers.  It's a large group so you can get a lot of input on types and brands of W&D (as well as vacuums, detergents, soaps, etc). After a few weeks in that group though, a few things:
1) Some of those ladies are CRAAAAY-ZAYY about keeping their house clean; to the point where they have an actual breakdown because hubby didn't rinse his plate before putting it in the sink. 
2) For about a week I felt really guilty about my house, but then I realized: it's not that bad overall and it could be worse and I'd rather be doing all the other stuff I do do and things I never find time for than obsessing over it. 
3) The insistence that husbands are unable to clean up after themselves and are therefore referred to as another child is epidemic and sad. Expect them to be an adult and help out and they will. Also, stop referring to grown ass men as children. Yes, they can be as much of a pain in the ass as kids; however, they are still not kids and are capable of a lot more than they are sometimes given credit for. It also seems that a lot of them know the trick of doing a half-assed job the first time asked so they won't ever be asked to do it again.  Also, if they do something differently than you, but the end result is the same - suck it up buttercup, it's not how it gets done just that it gets done.
4) I still don't know what washer and dryer I want. Front load or top load? If I go with top load - with or without an agitator? What brand is good? WHY IN THE HELL DO THE COOL ONES HAVE TO COST SO MUCH?!

Adam will be turning 18 this year. (I know, right?!!?!?) Every now and then Robert and I remember this, or realize that he will (theoretically) graduate next year (he's on track to graduate but shit happens and I'm not trying to jinx anything) and we will be floored for a few seconds while contemplating the HOLY SHIT-ness of it all. 

Like now. I just realized what I typed out and had to focus on breathing for a second. 

My boss was even floored the other day when I said something about his 18th birthday this year. I've been working at Providence for 10 years this August so yeah - time flies when you're not looking. 

Anyways - he turns 18 and I realized that he can 1-can vote for the first time this year, 2-vote in the primaries which for Oregon take place in April, and 3-will get to vote for president for the first time. I made him register to vote but won't force him to vote. He doesn't know who he'd like to vote for beyond, "NOT Trump!" I'm right there with him. 

Carus has started working - sort of.  She is working off some of Scout's boarding fees by working at the barn 3 days a week.  Friday, Saturday, and Sunday she is to feed dinner to all horses (11 horses and 1 mini horse), check and fill waters in all pastures and stalls, and clean 5 stalls in addition to Scout's. I'm helping too because I can't just sit around waiting for her to be done while twiddling my thumbs.  She is very excited about it.

Adam tagged along for Donkey lessons this week too.  He became friends with Tess, which wasn't too hard as he had a scratcher and some grain. Carus is still making friends with Bailey who is making Carus work for her friendship, though they did graduate to donkey driving which was semi-successful.  Adam might have some interest in driving donkeys too. He's being a bit shy about whether or not he wants to learn how. 
(There is no sound to the above video - the rain hitting the barn roof was too loud so I muted it.) (Stupid Oregon is still raining. LOTS)

Chewie is still a puppy and all the puppy work that comes with it, but he is starting to understand potty training and he can sit on command.  Most of the time he will also stop chewing on something he isn't supposed to be chewing on when I say leave it. Most of the time. He doesn't like me reprimanding him either. He got his first shots today - 13 lbs 8 oz. He is growing quickly.

In this video he was trying to convince Wilbur to come down and play. Wilbur has no interest. He doesn't poof up or hiss or swipe at Chewie, but he will walk away when he's done with the puppy barking and bouncing and trying to bite his tail. Simba, on the other hand, flat out Cats at Chewie, though he Cats at Leia too. He might consider Yoda a cat as he just ignores him. 

24 February 2016

New puppy

Introducing Chewie Sir ChewsAlot Chewbacca, III

Photo at 6 weeks, 7 lb 8 oz and growing fast.

In case you missed the news on Facebook (and all the puppy videos and photo spam I've been plastering all over it) we got a new puppy.

He came home February 13th and has been keeping us busy. The kids are helping a lot with taking him out to potty and playing with him (and keeping him from chewing on things he shouldn't). He's a good puppy, learning very quickly.

His desire to chew on EVERYTHING quickly earned a nickname of Chewie while we debated for 2 weeks about what his name should be.

We went through so many names, but we kept coming back to the nickname Chewie. So voila.

It's hard to get a puppy to look at the camera while being still on a scale.

Yoda doesn't care for him (he doesn't like little animals), Simba is not cool with him, Wilbur doesn't care, and Leia started out nervous but now plays with him and worries when he is whining.

Thanks Robert for help wrangling my model. 

14 February 2016

All about the weekend

My weekend has been great.

I started out with a riding lesson on Tucker. I left feeling really happy with myself. I wanted to work on my balancing and having better control of my seat, and my steering. Tucker is a smart horse. He figures out what the pattern/routine is and then anticipates the next move and tries to cut corners so he makes me work to keep to what I say we're doing and not what he thinks we are doing. One of the exercises my trainer had me doing was riding without stirrups. Definitely used a few more muscles doing that - especially when I started doing it at a trot. I'm happy with the sore muscles I have today; let's me know my work paid off.

After my lesson, I picked up Robert and we ran errands, did some grocery shopping, got some lunch, and hung out together.

Then, Saturday evening Robert and I went and picked up our new puppy. He's really little still, but mom weaned them a little over a week ago so they were ready to go to their new homes earlier than planned (they were thinking at least another week). (This is earlier than puppies usually come home, but I didn't want him to be all alone with his siblings going home this weekend.) We surprised the kids with him; they knew we were getting a puppy, they just didn't know we were getting him so soon.

Leia and Yoda have been slightly afraid/weary of him (omg, what is that thing?), but at my 5 am wake-up Leia started to play with him. He tires out pretty quickly still so just when she was really getting into it, he sat down and promptly fell asleep. Robert had the next shift at 7:30 am and the household was up not too long after that. 

The kids have been in charge of him most of today (Sunday), with Robert and I as supervision. Carus is already pretty good at noticing potty sniffing cues. She has insisted on being on night-watch with him and has put his crate in her room already. She says he's her puppy. 

He doesn't have a name yet. We can't all agree on one. Robert likes Rex, I like Tater (as in Tater Tot) and I keep calling him Buddy, Carus likes Tater but also would like something else, and Adam has been wanting to continue the Star Wars theme we have and go with Luke or Kenobe but no one else is really feeling those names. We'll figure it out and for now it's okay because I don't think he'd come when called. Have any name suggestions? 

10 February 2016


Carus cut her hair! Like 6 weeks ago, but I'm lazy on this updating the blog thing lately. It's been shared on Facebook and Instagram though so if you follow me there this is old news.  It is stinking adorable. It's also weird cause it hasn't been anywhere near this short since she was a baby. But she loves it and that's what matters.

We colored it this evening.  And for a change my blog will get the news the same day as my Facebook did. Ha!  Better photos to come later when we have sunlight (and hopefully those will make their way here too). It's a deep purple-ish red and how it colored based on where her natural hair was at the roots and the previously colored hair, it has a nice graduation of color from red to purple to a deep wine color. 

In other Carus news:  Scout and Carus attended their first show of the year - Shaggy Days.  It was rainy and muddy because it has been raining for 5 years straight up here. No, that was not an exaggeration. We're soggy.  Fields have flooded and the roads are littered with POT HOLES so much so that trying to avoid them when driving will make you look like a drunk driver. The show - it was good. A long day, of course, because now that she has a taste for showing she wants to do as many classes as possible and that means we're there until the end of the day. She's no longer a Novice; she has advanced to Intermediate level in 4H, which means a bit more difficulty and a bit more competition.  The Showmanship pattern threw her (and others in the same competition group) for a loop by asking them to show their horse on the off-side (show from the right side of the horse when usually they show from the left). Several kids, including Carus, expressed their panic over it, but in the end they all stepped up and did their best. Carus placed 7th in Showmanship which was a little disappointing for her, but she felt she did her best and was happy with it.  In her other classes, all riding classes, she didn't place and got really frustrated by the end of the day. It's hard for us watching too because we will think she did better than some of those placing. We're a bit biased I'm sure, but also, we're not the judge who is looking for certain things and at certain times in the class. Some of it is what is going on when the judge is looking or not looking. Either way, there is stuff for Carus to practice on before their next show near the end of March. After the show it seemed that Scout developed an abscess in his hoof, and I got another lesson in horses. Man, that was some fun stuff. *sarcasm*

Lastly on Carus, her new 4H group is doing a fundraiser.  Since they are a new group this year, there are no funds from last year carrying over. We're starting fresh.  If you're local, we're collecting soda cans and I'll come pick them up. If you're not local and would still like to donate, please let me know. We have a banner to pay for that we bought (using credit of one of the parents) for a Holiday Light Parade in December that we will also use as part of our decorations for Horse Fair in June.  The kids would also like matching team shirts and sweatshirts, and we'll need more decorations besides the banner for Fair too.

Adam performed in a play at the high school. It was their annual Shakespeare play; this year they did Midsummer's Night Dream. And they were AMAZING! Adam played the Duke of Athens.  He makes a great king. I didn't get any photos of him in the play, unfortunately. So enjoy a photo of Adam and Robert in light up glasses that Adam got from one of the basketball games. He enjoys the heck out of band and playing at school sporting events. He's also started a D&D club at the school and is having fun playing that after school once a week and online every weekend.

First semester grades have come out. Carus has As, meet expectations, and exceeds expectations (As are for her high school classes, the other weird grades are for her middle school classes).   Adam has mostly As, a B, and an F. He has a problem with not turning in his work. He does it, just doesn't turn it in. Weirdo.

We have been lecturing him and grounding him for a couple years, and he still occasionally "forgets" to turn in work so this time we didn't lecture him. He was not expecting to get an F at all. He usually can just skate through his classes with very minimal effort so I think he was a bit surprised to find out otherwise.  He was also so disappointed in himself. He knew he messed up and he asked what his punishment would be. We asked in return what we should do since we didn't feel what we have done has worked. He didn't know what it should be, but for about 2 weeks now he has not gotten on his computer, nor asked to get on his computer.

My teenager grounded himself from his computer. This cracks me up to no end. I think Robert and I will just see how long he feels he needs to be grounded. I'll take bets if you want to guess when he'll give out.

As for Robert and I - work is still work, his back issues are still there, and we're doing what we do. Nothing exciting here.

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