Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Pigs and Purple Potatoes

Rolie Polie Olie, a.k.a. Rolie
Okay, so it's a Guinea Pig, but if you ask my daughter, it's just a pig.
Yep, we went shopping with my last bread money check and bought ourselves a new pet. Since I don't like the dog, and he's too big for Natalie and completely ignores Carson, we thought maybe a smaller pet would be good for the kids (and me). We arrived at the pet store with the intent of purchasing a small hamster. However, the girl working there convinced us that with small, loud, energetic children, hamsters were not the best choice, as they bite. I asked about birds, thinking a parakeet would be fun. She told us that parakeets really don't like people. Mike and I thought she was being a little hard on these two kinds of animals (Mike had hamsters growing up, and I'd had a parakeet), but we decided to take her seriously. We asked for suggestions, and she said mice (ewe! Thankfully, they were all out of mice that evening, so it wasn't even an option) or guinea pigs. Supposedly guinea pigs are calmer and don't bite. We finally decided to look at the guinea pigs. Carson was very upset, as he'd been promised a hamster. But when the gal took out the first guinea pig for us to see, he changed his mind pretty fast! They had a whole new shipment of guinea pigs in the back that hadn't been brought to the front yet, so we got a lot of different ones to choose from. Some were pretty crazy looking, but we ended up with a pretty classic looking one, partly because he was cute, but mostly because he was amazingly calm! Carson named him Rolie Polie Olie, but we just call him Rolie for short.
Unbelievable! I mean, how many young pets (we've had him less than a week) can sit calmly on a nearly 2- and nearly 4-year-old's lap like that?
Carson really likes Rolie, but he's nothing to Natalie! She is practically obsessed with him! The first thing she does every morning is check on Rolie. And she loves to hold him. She doesn't really like large animals from the front, but this little guy is just her size. No fear with this one.
I couldn't be happier with our choice of pet. No bites yet, and believe me, he's had the time and the motivation. See how she's holding him below? He's great for young kids.
Also, my mom came to visit us last week. We had a great time visiting with her, and can't wait until we get to visit at Christmas. After she left, I told Carson she had to go because Grandpa missed her. He told me, "We both miss her. Grandpa misses her and I miss her. Next time, Grandpa should come too." Carson thinks this is the perfect solution, and that way she never has to leave! My mom celebrated her birthday here, and that was fun! Here's her cake:
We gave her 4 candles, at Carson's request.
Unfortunately, I didn't think to get the camera out again during her visit. But here's a picture of Mike and the kids outside with our football. We've been listening to our favorite team's football games online, and so the kids like to go outside to play football with Daddy during halftime.
And last of all, here are some awesome pictures of the coolest potatoes I've ever seen! Our neighbor grew them in his garden, and he gave a few to us. They are such a deep, vibrant color of purple! Has anyone else ever seen such a thing?
And they're even purple in the middle. I'm going to see if we can grow some next year, too. They taste really good as well!

P.S. Mike's lab results came back negative for Celiac! Now if we could just pinpoint exactly what IS wrong with Mike, and especially Carson...

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Chili Snow

We took all the red peppers from our garden before the first hard frost and Carson helped me sew them onto a string which we hung in the kitchen to dry. He was surprising good at it, and he didn't poke either of us with the needle! Now that they're dried, I can throw them in my food processor for garden-grown crushed red pepper!
Here are the kids playing outside in the first snow of the season. Not much, but Carson was so excited about it that he had to go out as soon as he ate breakfast. It was 8am, and very cold, so they only lasted about 10 minutes out there, but they had a great time. Carson's favorite was the slide, which was fast since it was wet with snow.