Sunday, September 18, 2016

Summer excursions

Well, time to sum up a full summer of fun.

Hudson still considers Catta to be his cat, and will try his hardest to ensure that she gets the proper amount of pets and snuggles.
He has also begun to appreciate legos and built up all sorts of lego tractors. He would help me build it according to the directions, but then, he will go off and build his own. Some of his lego tractors had two wheels; others had six. But he loved playing with all of them.
While clearing up our property, there was a lot of spare branches around that needed to be cleared out. And the best way to deal with branches is to build a bonfire.  Hudson knew that pouring sand on a fire will put it out, so he stood watch with his shovel ready to put the fire out if it got out of control.
Another benefit of bonfires is roasting smores on them.
Sara Beth hosted a tea party for Hudson and I one weekend. She set out several candy dishes and wanted to know our favorite tea flavors. Hudson definitely liked the candy.
Make your own pizza night is always an adventure. In this case, I mistakenly placed Hudson's and Sara Beth's pizza on the same baking tray. That led to some heated discussion when Hudson accidentally put some cheese and toppings on his sister's pizza.
We went by the farmer's market. They were handing out free strawberry short cake.
While working out in the yard, I heard a commotion from the front where Heather and the kids were weeding the flower beds. Sara Beth comes towards me with some large squirming thing. I initially thought it was a giant worm. Fortunately, it wasn't. Instead it was a large salamander.
Sara Beth still has braces on her teeth, and her orthodontist is still in Texas. So we have been going back monthly to get them worked on. While there, we stayed with my parents and went out on the boat with them.
Hudson also wanted to help my dad use the tractor to pull out a dead tree. Unfortunately, it turned out the tractor did not have enough traction; the tree refused to be pulled out.
Back in Alabama, we went back to work cleaning up the property. I took a break from pressure washing the driveway to play a game of Tic Tac Toe with Sara Beth.
In preparation for the summer weather, Heather's mom went out and got Sara Beth some summer bathing suits and clothes.
Every Monday morning, the trash truck comes to pick up our trash at the street. The bad news is that it is a long distance from our house to the street, and it takes a while to move the trash can out there. The good news is that I have helpers.
Another pile of cleared branches means another bonfire and another evening of smores.
One Sunday after church, we waiting for our orders at an Italian restaurant when Sara Beth told us that she had been working on perfecting her "puppy dog eyes" to beg for things. When she demonstrated that she could cause fake tears to form, I was so impresses that I had to take a picture. So here she is with a grin on her face and tears in her eyes. I also told her that her "puppy dog eyes" were impressive, but not persuasive.
I have no memory of this picture. Feel free to make up your own story about what was happening in it.
Here we are back in Texas for another orthodontist appointment. While there, Heather stopped by a local Texas butcher to get a genuine Texas brisket for her step dad to smoke for the 4th of July. They had a bison on the wall.
Even in the evenings in Texas it gets hot. After dinner with some former neighbors, we stopped by TC's to pick up shaved ice for dessert to cool off.
Back in Alabama, I decided it was time to introduce Sara Beth to firearms, We focused primarily on safety this first time and got her used to firing the gun, and not so much on accuracy or proper form.
In addition to garbage cans, other items can be hauled up and down our driveways.
After seeing me mow, and sitting with me several times, Sara Beth asked to mow the front yard all by herself. Heather got the edges mowed, but then got off and allowed Sara Beth to mow the middle. One less chore for me to do.
For the Fourth of July, we had a small set of fireworks to set off. The kids really enjoyed the sparklers and roman candles.
Since it is summer, we have been letting Sara Beth stay up later. Here she was sitting with Heather on the front porch swing playing a
One summer afternoon, Heather decided to play a board game with the kids. They picked the Game of Life. Hudson got very sad when he learned about how taxes work.
We went to the Space and Rocket center in Huntsville for my birthday. While there Sara Beth saw the 3G ride and asked Heather to go on it with her. That left Hudson and I to wander around and find something to do. He found a ride that he was tall enough to go on and walked right up to it without any fear at all. He was a little apprehensive as it initially was going up, By the time the ride started bouncing him around, he had a huge grin on his face, and when it was over, he got right back in line to do it again.
Hudson brought his money with him went out to Uncle Darwin's auction house in order to buy something. He found a Christmas toy and began to negotiate a price. Darwin asked for the 5 pennies. Hudson made a counter offer of his 4 silver coins so he could keep his 5 copper coins for later.
Sara Beth and Hudson found a place under one of the bushes to build a fort. They got some of the underbrush cleared out, but then went on to play somewhere else as it was getting too hot out.