"Lo, Children Are An Heritage of the LORD: and the Fruit of the Womb is His Reward" - Psalm 127:3

Monday, March 31, 2014


 We had an exciting time today.  Our five year old is now in a therapeutic horseback riding program due to his autism, and today was his first day.

I had to laugh when I headed into the bathroom with him.  This is what greets you when you open the door - a life-size John Wayne. HA

This week we will have three days of classes.  It's their winter camp, and they take this time to teach the kids all about horses and caring for them.  Today we learned all about the different breeds of horses, their coloring, markings on their faces and legs, and so on.

It was very interesting.  I learned a lot too.

Then we headed out to the corrals, where we visited some colts and were shown different markings on faces and legs.  By the way, the ten year old tagged along and they even let him participate fully.  It was a very neat experience for him as horses are one of his favorite things to draw.  He took command of my camera and shot several close ups of horse faces and other muscle groups.

Today was an introduction to horses for my wary five year old.  Thankfully it went really well and he was a little shy, but did really seem to enjoy being with the horses.

We got to walk through the pen of the older horses and see in person the difference between a sorrel and a bay.

The we headed back to the arena and the kids got helmets strapped on.

 They learned all about grooming, and what all the different brushes are for.

The horse's name is Sadie.  She is a 25 year old paint, and she was very gentle.

Each child is assigned a horse and a volunteer to work with them.  They weren't expecting our ten year old, so our boys shared Sadie.

She didn't seem to mind all the extra attention. :)

They even taught the kids to clean the hooves.

And then the kids were shown how to lead a horse, and they took their horse around the arena a few times, practicing saying "walk on" and "whoa."  They won't get to ride this week.  The actual riding classes start in the middle of April.  I'm glad they have the delay though.  The five year old is definitely not comfortable enough around the horses yet, and if he has a bad experience once, then he will be very unlikely to try again.

The five year old was about over all the stimulation at this point and he was beginning to shut down.  He couldn't get the hang of walking ahead of the horse to lead it, and he would forget to pull on the reins when he said "whoa" - and he practically whispered the word.  So we're going to have to work on that.

 They also taught us to tie a slip knot, which the ten year old thought was a lot of fun.

When he got it tied, he admitted that it was a lot more difficult than he had expected it to be.

It was a lot of fun, but by the time the hour and a half were over, the five year old was completely overstimulated.  This is a typical problem with autism.  And on the way home, he had a full-blown meltdown, screaming and fighting everything - the seatbelt, the seat in front of him, the door and window he was sitting by.  It was a total mess.  He had a very hard time pulling himself together for most of the evening.  I hope tomorrow he will be a little more used to it and it won't be too much for him.  When he did finally settle down (nearly 3 hours later) all he could talk about was Sadie.  So I know he did enjoy it.  I'm looking forward to tomorrow.

Saturday, March 22, 2014

Friday and Saturday

 I hope you never get tired of my sunrise and sunset pictures.  I sure never do.  This was Friday's sunrise.

 And this was Friday's clown.  The five year old dressed up - complete with snow boots - and then played INside.

 He makes some pretty awesome Lego creations lately.

This looked similar to a hovercraft with a windshield and everything.

He told me it goes on the ice.

He's always so proud of these creations.

We have greatly enjoyed the week of Ambassador Baptist College's 25th Anniversary Bible Conference.  I watched every service (morning and evening) this week and was so blessed.  Friday night, the chorale did a special before the service and then they did the Hallelujah chorus from Handel's Messiah at the end.  It was amazing.

 The college puts on a performance of The Messiah every year on the Friday and Saturday night after Thanksgiving.  This time they had everyone - current students, and alumni members who were there - who had ever sang in that performance sing together to close out Bible Conference.  It was very powerful.  All the preaching for the week was done by alumni, and they were all very challenging and good.  When Saturday rolled around, I didn't know what to do with myself without the sermons to watch.  It was such a good week.

 Saturday - this morning, it was so nice.  We went out for breakfast - which we never do - and then a little later I ran back to town to the bank, library and grocery store.  When I got back home, I fed the birds because they seemed to be staring at me through the window and begging ;) - and then decided it was time to shovel off the deck.  I didn't take a before picture, but there was still a good foot of snow on the deck, with ice underneath.  I figured I'd let the sun and warm weather do some of the work.

The five year old loves to shovel.  That's really an understatement.  He *adores* shoveling.  I bought him a shovel his own size but he still just grabs the big one.  He was inspired by my shoveling.

It was really pretty cute.  He was inside when I started shoveling, and he put his own snow boots on and headed out the door opposite of where I was, grabbed a shovel, and hiked all the way around the house and down the hill so he could shovel where he could see me.

... in the middle of the yard.  No real purpose in shoveling there, but he was having a wonderful time.  It was so nice he didn't need a jacket.

Meanwhile, my husband spent most of the day studying away.  He is filling in for our pastor this weekend, so he had several messages to prepare.

 The boys spent a good portion of the day playing outside.

The little frog is a garden ornament, but the boys think he's supposed to play with them. :)

Oh, and this was a great game - Step 1. Grab a handful of dirt out of the planter.

Step 2. Dump it into the basket on the picnic table.

Step 3. Dump the basket on the deck :(

I think I finally got them convinced to leave the dirt in the planter box.  I promised them I would plant flowers for them when it gets warm enough.  I did have to dump dirt out of the box under the seat of one of their riding toys though - ha.

We also hooked up the computer to the tv and watched the online streaming of the Jackson Hole Snowmobile Hill Climb.  We usually go up and watch it in person, but we didn't realize it was this weekend, and it wouldn't have worked out anyway since my husband needed the studying time.  He did watch the modified snowmachines though.  Boy can they move.  If you want to watch, it's at sled2sled.com and will be on again tomorrow (Sunday).  We'll catch the end of it after church.

The view was better from home, but not as fun.  Usually we sit at the base of Snow King ski resort and watch with binoculars and spotting scopes.  There is a playground there where the boys can run and climb and swing while we watch. The online streaming is nice because you can easily see the action at the top of the hill.  The five year old decided he still needed a scope so he made his own by rolling up a piece of paper :)  It's been a fun day.

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

A Cure For Our Domino Problem

 Did you know we had a domino problem?  Ha.  The problem is that every time we play the two little boys, who don't know how to play yet, steal all our spare dominoes.  So when we have to draw, we usually either have a limited draw pile, or we have to beg one of the boys to give us one.  And they're usually right side up.

So I cured the problem by purchasing a small set at our local dollar store, along with a bottle of blue nail polish.  They're not as pretty as I expected, but the boys know which ones are theirs.

When I was nearly finished putting the blue on them, the five year old said, "Make minions!"  Wish he would have said that earlier.  That would have been cute.  I may have to get another cheap set of dominoes and some yellow nail polish - lol.

There were two geese at the kids' fishing pond at our local park today.  I've never seen them there before.

Can you spot this one?  Look on the shore on the right side of the picture.

This picture has both of them.

The five year old and I walked around town today while we were waiting for the ten year old to finish archery practice.  These are some pictures from that walk.

Of course we had to stop to throw a few rocks in the stream. ;)