Saturday, August 28, 2010

Pony Pony Pony!!

OK well, we all know we have enough horses here at the Morrissey Compound, but recently my children had the opportunity to keep a friends' two ponies here and rode one named Hocus Pocus each day. Both kids, especially Ethan, were thrilled and started a campaign to get a pony of their own. I told them maybe sometime, but that it would take a lot of time and looking to find the right pony. See, all ponies are not created equal. Some are absolute gems and some are holy terrors, sending kids fleeing to their bicycles. So I was determined not to squander my chance to have horse-loving kids with a bad experience for them.
Well long story short, it so happened that a friend from Pony Club was selling their daughter's pony she had outgrown. Already we know the owners and the pony which is a huge bonus because one can traipse all over the map looking at "bombproof, beginner dream ponies" who turn out to be rotten half-broke nags.
Stacey suggested that we come down and she give the kids each a short lesson on the pony, Justin Time. We did, and it was easy to see he was a gem. Before we left Ethan tugged my sleeve and whispered "Mom, so what do we think of this pony?". I said that we like him very well but he is a major purchase and we need to talk to Dad about it. Ethan said "Mom, Dad's no horse person". True son, but still a big purchase.
I scrupled for a couple days before telling Bill this pony is just the one and we won't easily find another like him. This morning I met the Bates' at a Pony club meeting where Deanna tearfully bade Justin goodbye. It brought back memories of selling my first pony who took such care of me.
We got him home and Ethan, Alaina plus my friend Sara's kids Eliza and Jay brushed, petted and rode him. After Eliza and Jay left, my two were eager for special time with Justin. They rode bareback, single and double, backwards and front, slid off his bottom "Indian Style", hugged him, controlled him themselves, and Ethan even drug a muck bucket over, plopped it next to Justin and climbed on by himself, none too gracefully. Justin not only dealt with it all but ate it up. He hugs the kids back, carries his head at their level when they lead him, and expertly adjusts his ride to each kid or situation.
Poor Cody was looking worried as he trailed after Ethan and Justin. I think he knows he's gonna have to share Ethan time now.
Ethan as always was full of quoteables. Here are a few:
"Paint horses are like watching clouds; you can find all sorts of cool pictures hidden in their fur"(we found a ghost, dragon, hidden Mickey and Bill even found Count Dooku).
"I know Justin is the perfect size for me because when I lean forward and hug him my hands just reach around his neck"
"Mom, do you think by tomorrow I can get Justin out by myself, get on him and surprise you by riding him over to the house?" (Not quite yet, son)
"Look, Justin hugs us back; he must love us already" (he wraps his neck around the kids as they stand with him)
And, humorously, "Lainey, smell his fur right here; it smells like s'mores"

For the horse-savvy: Justin is a 9 year old, 13.3 hand registered Quarter Pony. His parents oddly enough are a large mini/small shetland mare and a paint horse stallion. Poor mama!


Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Larry and Deb Visit

Larry, Deb, Trevor & Ryan visited us on the last leg of a midwestern tour. The first legs were; The Amana Colonies, John Deere Factory, and Hannibal (Mark Twain stuff). So I am hoping we place at least second on the ratings of most exciting stops.
Their first evening involved a quick tour and a long evening of kids playing Wii and adults drinking wine on the screen porch. The following days consisted of swimming, grilling, fishing (Ethan now holds the record with a 26.25 inch catfish), gator rides, trips to town and their final evening at the A-frame at the winery. Deb also got to see Jordan play tennis a bit with me on Sunday.
Next we will refresh the house a bit and restock for Jeff and Beckie with Bri arriving tomorrow and the Riders arriving Thursday. More house party fun ahead!!

What the Flarp?

Conversation in the mall:
Alaina: Mommy will you do my flarp with me?
Alaina: See, it makes a sound like a toot or a (whispered) fart when you poke it
Ethan: Alaina, can I use your flarp?
Alaina: Sure...OK Ethan that's enough. You'll wear my flarp out.
Ethan: Oh come on Lainey, you could flarp all day and it still wouldn't quit working.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Kitty Party

Alaina's 5th birthday party was big fun. We had asked for items to donate to the local animal shelter instead of gifts and got a nice bunch of stuff to take in. The kids swam, then came in for snacks like watermelon, veggies w ranch, goldfish and swedish fish with pink lemonade. Next they each "adopted" a tiny stuffed kitten from a basket and picked a ribbon for a collar. They decorated nametags and strung them on the collar. If I had thought of it sooner I would have had tiny bells to string on also but they turned out cute.
Next we had kitty cupcakes. The kids ran and played and we gave out my rudimentary drawstring bags of goodies (thank you Oriental Trading for having so much themed junk). Several friends stayed to fish for a while and there were some big thrills when the catfish were reeled in.
Afterward we continued fishing while the kids played with their friend Mariel on the hammock and tree fort. It was a perfect evening and we were ready to relax after our party weekend. Soon Joe and Julie arrived to pick up Mariel and we all sat on the screened porch to relax some more. We got great furniture for that room(wicker with thick comfy cushions) and with the horses in view and sounds and smells of nature around, the screened porch is becoming a favorite place to be.

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Blog - Round Trois

Here I am determined yet again to do my blog. I love the idea, and am forever thinking to myself "I need to blog this or that", but it just hasn't been happening. I was given crap for that the other day, and life is calming down a bit again, so for the sake of recording life's moments and for the enjoyment of my two followers (estimates rounded up to the next whole number), I am back.
A list of things I need to catch up on:
Key Largo
Ethan's basketball and baseball seasons
OMG Did we really bid on a house?
Cub scouts
New house
Jordan mission trip
Jordan tennis
Tour of Warm Springs Ranch
Pool ownership
Loose horses
PA Board
Summer visitors
Shamelessly enjoying neighbors' expensive firework shows
Lainey is 5 years old
Wednesday's with Eliza
Reverting to slow internet
That Lake House feeling
Learners' Permit
Trail ride
House selling fun
Bill's fun with pool skimmers

Right now I am sending a couple photos to a friend. I began that project a bit before 10AM. It is now 11:30. Still "sending mail". Yeah right. Happily if I don't add photos to this blog I should be able to post things in a reasonable time frame. Besides the photo uploading (don't expect a ton of stuff on Flickr anytime soon) it's not so bad and certainly limits any unneccessary web use. Except for Jordan who still manages to enjoy 6 hours or more per day online. Teen priorities!

This weekend is a fun little whirlwind. Yesterday we cleaned and prepped for a swim/fish party for Ethan's baseball team. From 4-6:30 all was as planned. Luckily we held off eating and had set up food indoors because about then a huge storm rolled up and we all rushed in just in time to eat and watch the storm. So instead of lawn games and a bonfire with marshmallows, the kids played Wii for a bit then when Wii gave way to battles in the basement (fun ones with toy swords and helmets) Bill and Coach took them to the barn for some basketball contests. It turned out beautifully and ended up lasting until about 9:30. A stringer of fish were taken home including the new record Cat of 26 inches. Coach hooked it but handed it off to Danny (Lightning) Nichols who reeled it in and claimed the prize for Biggest Fish.

Next I ran Jordan to town. She, Kahlea and Mikayla had planned to spend the night together at Kahlea's house before leaving at 6:30 this morning for their mission trip. The plan, like last year, was to dress all in black and sneakily decorate the four vans last night. The rain spoiled that plan, but after a quick stop at Wal-Mart for last minute items, Jordan drove me from Wal-Mart to Kahlea's house (significant driving in town, in rain, in dark even if a short way) and the girls had their slumber party and compared snacks and other fun stuff they had packed.

Today we will freshen up the house in preparation for a 3:00 pool party. Lainey's birthday was the 10th but this was our best bet for a party with friends. We have a kitty theme, with donations to the local Humane Society instead of gifts. Kitty cupcakes, goldfish crackers, Swedish fish, and goody bags that I sewed (yes the machine was coated in dust and the bags look like a second year 4-H project) and we filled with kitty themed crap. Kids will decorate little pet picture frames if time permits. Hoping the sun stays and no more pop-up thunderstorms today! This has been the rainiest July ever.

Must go prepare!

Tuesday, November 17, 2009


Today, Ethan had fillings done at the dentist. While under the influence of nitrous, he said he could feel something hurting. Dr. Stevens stopped and offered to numb the tooth. Ethan said he didn't want a shot because "the only thing worser than shots is Barbies". Dr. Stevens wants to put that one up on his wall. Also under nitrous, "this nose thing smells so good, I want to take it home".
Tonight, Alaina was dancing around at Jordan's riding lesson in her Mizzou cheerleader shirt, leftover from a dress-up day at school. The instructor asked her if she would be a cheerleader one day. Alaina said "No, I'm gonna be a teacher and a Mommy; I'm gonna have lots and lots of babies". How many babies will you have, the instructor asked. Alaina considered and announced "I'm gonna have ten babies!" Might be fun to quote her when she's about 25.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Happy Hallow-Post

Ok, that last post was a downer. So let's review Halloween. Alaina was dressed as a lovely Princess Ariel, Ethan was a Clone Trooper, but don't call him a Clone Trooper because he's actually Captain Rex all right? Cody was festive in a jester collar in Halloween print with tiny bells that when worn in the house quickly became too much.
Jordan decided that this was a good year to be too big for Halloween. Her friends invited her to walk around their neighborhoods but she just wasn't into it. Can't blame her at all. Something about ringing doorbells for candy when you're 5'8" is awkward.
We decided to take the little ones and Cody to Rocheport. We had never trick-or-treated there and this summer some friends told us it is a great time. And, officially, it is the kids' hometown! First we stopped by our neighbor Teresa's where we got wonderful fresh popcorn balls, then we hit the streets for about 1 1/2 hours. There were lots of kids out, and many fun decorations. Plus, the fact that most of the homes in Rocheport are from the 1850's or so added a spooky feel. With brimming buckets, we returned home to a huge pot of vegetable beef soup that I'd left warming on the stove.
Ethan's Favorite Stop: The house that gave out pop rocks
Alaina's Favorite Stop: The house that gave out bubble gum
Best Decor: House with lit decoration all over their big landscaped terrace and garage, a bonfire, spooky music and resident ghoul handing out treats.
Most Unique Treat: Mexican candies-one made of dehydrated mango, one of tamarind pulp, both coated with red chili powder. Tart and zippy! I have inherited these and must say I'm gaining fondness for them.

Class Party Highlights: Ethan- Mummy wrapping contest, treats made of apple slices spread with peanut butter for lips with tiny marshmallows between for teeth, mask decorating.
Alaina - Making a scarecrow face with her own photo inserted, Freeze Dance, Cupcakes!!!

Now to run the scary luminaries downstairs and dig out the cornucopia!!