Three Kids and a Dog

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Trick or Treat

Right now, Austen, Tom and Adler are probably halfway through trick or treating around my brother's neighborhood. Austen's candy bag is probably getting too heavy and he may want Tom to hold it in between houses. Adler is loving all the people out as she gets to walk around the neighborhood although I'm betting she gets spooked by a few costumes and barks at them. I'm only speculating all this because I don't know. I'm in New Orleans for work for Austen's third Halloween and am very sad I don't get to see him dressed up in his Halloween costume venturing from house to house to collect his loot. At least he will be with his cousins and his aunt/uncle and grandpa too so I know he'll have a blast. It sort of makes me feel better. Tom is sending me updates so this picture is the latest one I received right before they were about to start their journey.

Friday, October 23, 2009

Our Road Trip to Pick Apples

My favorite season is fall. Maybe because I was born in the fall and so were Tom and Adler. Or maybe I just like the cool weather, the fall clothes and the color of the leaves changing on the trees. Regardless of why I love the fall, we make a lot of effort during this season to enjoy the outdoors.

So last weekend, we decided to go apple picking. We made a day trip out of it traveling east into Michigan, visiting our land in South Haven where we hope to someday build a summer home. We let Adler and Austen romp around our land. Austen kept tripping over the thick brush and I kept laughing. I really wish my camera had caught him trying to maneuver around our piece of land as he would fall down repeatedly and look at the mud covering his hands.

As for Adler - our usual great dog decided she wasn't going to listen on this trip. Once she got out of the car, she ran across the street and up to the door of our neighbor's house. We used her recall command to call her back to us but she was being defiant. Just then the neighbors pulled up. Adler started walking back across the lawn, promptly squatted and peed on their lawn. Great timing! Here she is enjoying herself on the land:

After our visit to the land, we ventured on to an apple farm in the area. We thought Austen would love picking the apples off the trees but he was more interested in the wagon that they gave us to put the apples in as we perused the orchards. Here's Austen and his wagon on apple picking day. His apple picking skills leave a lot to be desired!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Music that Gets Austen Cleaning

I think I've mentioned before that Austen loves to help. Give him a task -- whether it's moving the garbage cans as we are vacuuming or helping me put together a centerpiece for the kitchen table -- and he loves doing it.

I think this will come in handy when his new sister or brother is here and he will feel a part of taking care of the new baby. He's already told me that he's going to carry the baby (we'll see), feed it (maybe) and share his toys with it (very nice offer).

I hope he continues his habit of cleaning up too. Check out this video of Austen not just cleaning but turning on some music while he cleans up.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

The Pumpkin Farm

Every year, even before Austen and Adler, Tom and I ventured to Goebbert's Pumpkin Farm in Barrington to pick out pumpkins for Halloween. This is Austen's third year visiting the pumpkin farm and each year just gets better and better because he can do more.

This year he walked around and picked out his own pumpkins, trying to lift even the heavy ones. He played hide and seek behind the cut outs of the Peanuts, Disney and Sesame Street characters you could take pictures with and he ate a lot of kettle corn and had fun riding the pony once again this year.

I have to say though, what he was most attracted to was the tractor. They had a hay ride pulled by a tractor that took you around a big cornfield and went through a haunted barn. Austen didn't much care for the barn but he loved watching and riding in the tractor. I think he told everyone when he got to school on Monday that he went on a "tracker" and it was "cary!"

Friday, October 02, 2009

Bribery Starts Early

Like every two year old, Austen does his share of whining. It's amazing how he can turn it on one moment and turn it off the next. Take for example, his latest reason to whine - putting on lotion after his bath. His dad can bathe him and he's fine with that but when it comes to putting on the lotion after his bath he breaks into his full on whining mode and insists that "Mommy do it!" Doesn't matter if I am in another room of the house busy, Austen will charge out of the bathroom in his towel to come find me. The only reprieve I get from this is if I am out walking Adler or if I am just not home. If that's the case, Austen doesn't even put up a fight and let's daddy do the lotion. That's until last night.

Whining, he finds me in his room tidying up. His dad is calling for him to come back to the bathroom so he can put on some lotion but he's insisting that I apply the lotion. Quickly, I whisper in his ear that I will give him money for his piggy bank if he lets daddy put the lotion on. Instantly, the whining stops and he hurries back to the bathroom so daddy can put on the lotion and he can get his pajamas on so he can collect his payment. Pretty proud of myself, I went to Tom's change drawer and pull out a nickel and a penny to pay Austen (shouldn't he pay him since he couldn't get him to put the lotion on?!) and I retreat to Austen's bedroom to wait for him thinking Tom never heard my bribe to Austen. But Austen gives me away by yelling "money!" when Tom finishes getting him ready and he runs to his room. Tom asks me incredulously, "You bribed him?!" "Sure," I say. "You should have thought of it first!"