Madison will eat pretty much anything – especially if it comes from a human hand. I was eating an apple tonight and she kept looking at it longingly. I decided to give her the core. She wasn’t sure what to do with it, which I found hilarious. In the end, I had to cut off a few pieces for her.
I have determined that the only reason people rake leaves is so they can make a big pile and then burn them. (Fire is so fascinating.) My family always mulched the leaves or occasionally burned them. No bagging leaves for us. (To be honest, I didn’t really have much to do with yard work growing up. This is all a new experience.)
I can finally say we are done raking leaves, but it took me three entire days spread over a four week period. This Saturday all I had left was the front yard. Wade and I got our rakes and the tarp and started raking. We would drag the leaves to the fire pit in the back yard and then watch them burn. We quickly realized that the burning was taking longer than the raking. We decided to make a big pile of leaves near the fire pit and I could burn them at night during the week. As we were bringing our last trip to the backyard, we looked up to see our spare pile of leaves on fire. It was a huge blazing inferno! We definitely wouldn’t have planned that but it made the burning process much faster.
Jamie came over tonight to have dinner and make sugar cookies with us. I am constantly looking for new recipes for pork chops and finally found one to try out. The glazed pork chops were pretty good. But on to the good stuff. I had bought some colored sugar cookie dough (red, yellow, blue, and green) from a friend selling it for her school and wanted it out of the freezer before we moved. Because I only have one heart cookie cutter, we decided to make this an all-holiday event. We used every cookie cutter I had – Halloween, Christmas, Valentine’s Day, and the odd ones. The cooking and decorating was a lot of fun, but the cookies weren’t so good. There is definitely not enough sugar in the sugar cookie dough.
I had sadly thought there would be no Christmas decorating this year. With my traveling and studying, I just wouldn’t have time to put decorations up until the week before Christmas. Then I would have only had them up about five days to enjoy. Wade decided we needed a tree regardless (thank goodness). We both strung the popcorn and then Wade did the rest. Now I’m into the Christmas spirit!
While visiting my mom in Kentucky, Madison got an early Christmas present. She has a new collar that reads “Santa Paws” and a new peppermint striped bone (thanks to Old Navy for their cute Holiday doggie line). Sadly, the bone has already been chewed into tiny pieces. I got the picture right before total destruction occurred.
Evidently Madison has decided to use my blanket as her new pillow. My nice, warm, cuddly, heated blanket. As soon as we walk into the living room she hurries to curl up on top of it – guess I’ll have to be quicker or sneakier.
Madison has entered a chewing phase. She doesn’t chew on people or furniture, but she has been destroying her toys. This is a first for Madison. I have thrown away three toys in the past week, such as the bear below.
One of the best commands we taught Madison was “pillow.” The moment this word is said she runs to her pillow and lays down. It is great if she is getting into things or we have company. The pillow is hers so she often plays with it. Last week it developed a few small holes, which Wade sewed up on Sunday. I usually leave the pillow in the hallway with Madison so I did today while I was gone. This is what I came home to….. I couldn’t do anything but laugh.
Going away for the weekend has gotten much more difficult since Madison joined us. All of a sudden, going away means taking Madison with us or finding a place to board her. I don’t mind boarding Madison, but it’s inconvenient and expensive. Some places put them in cages and some give them runs. Some offer “play time” with other dogs and some charge for “lap time.”
The biggest issue in deciding where to board Madison is when I am going to pick her up. Most places close at 6 pm on Sundays so I would have to get her on Monday, but if I am working that becomes hard because I don’t get off work before they close. But I finally found a solution! There is a kennel called Park ‘N Bark. They are located three minutes from the airport and they are open till 10 pm seven days a week. I’m going to try it out this weekend when we got D.C. for the costume party so we’ll see how it goes…..
Wade and I got up early and went to the 9 o’clock church service. There we learned that Buckhead Church (our new church which we really enjoy) is currently building a new building. Of course, that means they want money. Which we are all for, it’s just funny that the last church we left was fund raising for major renovations.
After church, we spent the day working on our Halloween costumes. Wade’s is high tech and going to look awesome! Can you guess what mine is? We had a gorgeous day and did all of our work outside.
As a final study break on Sunday night (before it went far into the night) Wade and I had a bonfire! Our backyard has a fire pit that we pile sticks in (the joys of living right outside the perimeter). The pile was finally good sized and there was a fall chill in the air. We went outside with our graham crackers, chocolate, and marshmallows. Madison kept trying to find a few pieces we dropped.
Wade and I decided to make sugar cookies again – yeah! I sent Wade on a hunt for Halloween cookie cutters (he came home with a pumpkin and a ghost) while I studied. Wade’s mom called with her recipe and I took a break to make the dough (which is super yummy too).
Here’s the recipe:
1 cup of butter creamed with 2 cups of sugar. Then add 2 eggs, 1 teaspoon of salt, 4 teaspoons of baking powder. Add 4 cups of flour, one at a time, till the dough is thoroughly mixed. Then add 1 teaspoon of vanilla. Let the dough chill in the fridge and take out a small portion at a time to make the cookies. Roll out the dough, with flour, till it is 1/4 to 1/8 inch thick and then bake the cookies at 400 degrees for 8-1o minutes.
Wade and I had fun with the cookies and ended up with a little flour fight. You can see that Madison got caught in the middle.
Wade and I started celebrating Halloween early. We decided at the last minute on Friday afternoon to do some pumpkin carving. Jamie, Steven, Grant, and Shelly came over and got creative – or rather Wade got creative. The rest of us discovered how wonderful stencils can be. Madison was underfoot and ate quite a bit of pumpkin guts – but it didn’t seem to bother her. My pumpkin is the third from the left!
Since we carved the first pumpkins so early, we’ll hopefully be able to have at least one more pumpkin carving before Halloween. Now we just have to work on our costumes for Rob’s B & B Party in Washington D.C.