Wednesday, July 24, 2013

Still Our Little Hero

Oreo’s heroics continue. On Saturday he flushed the finch out of the basement. Last night he did something even better.

It was around 9:30. We had the lights off in our room. Amanda was reading and I was drifting off to sleep. Lily was finishing up her electronics time. We heard Oreo’s collar stirring and I commented to Amanda that it was great to hear that she was going to bed when we told her to and that she was taking care of Oreo.

The next thing we knew we heard the door slam, Lily run up the steps, open our door, and start yelling, “A fox! There’s a fox! And Oreo chased it! And he’s gone!” This was of course accompanied with tears. It seems that Lily took Oreo out for his final business. As we often do in the evenings, she did this without a leash. The problem is that there was a fox in our driveway and Oreo chased it away.

I immediately threw on some clothes, put on my sandals, grabbed the big flashlight, and went outside. Poor Lily was in hysterics because she thought Oreo had run away. But just as I started asking her about it we heard the jingle of his collar and he came running back to us from between two houses a few doors down from us on the cul-de-sac. We also heard the fox bark a couple of times and then the sly devil slowly came down toward the street. I quickly ushered Lily and Oreo into the house.

Lily was pretty scared because the fox was back in our driveway and then skulked under our neighbor’s car. After a few minutes I took Oreo back out because I wasn’t sure that he had done what he needed to do. The fox had disappeared and Oreo was able to take care of business.

Once again, Oreo saved the day. The fox is pretty comfortable with people, but he didn’t like having Oreo chase him. I’m not sure what Oreo would do if he caught him, but clearly the little guy wants to protect us. There were no signs of a struggle on Oreo, so I don’t think that they had any contact. Oreo was pretty excited after all that. I guess it makes sense since he doesn’t often get to do what he was bred to do.

Saturday, July 20, 2013

Our Little Hero

Noah got a call from his friend Justin to play, so I took him over around 4:00. I came home, made some chai, and went down to the basement to putter a bit on the computer while Lily and Amanda read. I was very surprised to hear a loud bird call coming from the hall leading upstairs. I thought that it was Lily trying to play a trick on me until I saw a brown finch fly around the bottom of the stairs. It must have come in through the crawlspace when I had the door open this morning. Now it was stuck in the basement, confused, and likely scared.

I ran through my options. I didn't like the idea of going after it. I considered shooting it with my BB gun to put it out of its misery, but thought better of that. I opened up the outside door to the basement and tried to goad it into coming out. It was perched on the door leading inside, so I figured I'd go around and knock on the door.

I explained the situation to Amanda and Lily, who were very surprised. Lily wanted to come down to see it. Amanda made some comment about Oreo and that gave me the idea to bring him. It was time to put the half Cocker Spaniel in him to work.

He was very interested in the bird. He ran up the stairs to check it out. I turned off the light in the stairwell and turned on the lights in the basement to coax it out. It found just about every corner of the room until it eventually made its way out with Oreo about one step behind the whole time.

Since I am not a hunter I never thought that Oreo would be good for much more than snuggling on the couch. Today he saved us from what could have been a very messy situation.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Two Things

Amanda took Lily to a Jars of Clay concert yesterday evening, so I thought I would take advantage of a YoLo coupon to treat Noah (and me) to some yogurt. As I got in the car to pull out of the driveway I noticed some trash that I had to take to the dump. This was from the blinds in the upstairs bathroom that I replaced several weeks ago, but needed to throw out. Since we were going right by the dump I grabbed them and put them in the back of the car. We stopped at the dump for a minute and then went to Sam's for gas.

While driving I found the Durham Bulls game on the radio. I asked Noah if he wanted to listen to the Bulls game or to music and he chose the ballgame. That's my boy!

We went to Sam's and I left the radio on for him while I pumped the gas. When I got back in the car Noah announced, "I have two things to tell you, Daddy." This of course piqued my interest so I asked him what they were. He said,

One - he (referring to the Bulls' play-by-play man) said "dig into reading," which is the program I'm doing.

Two - there's a lizard in the car.

It seems that I brought in a small lizard with the trash. Noah wasn't too nervous about it, but we definitely didn't want it in the car. I don't know as that we ever got it out either. I will find out more when I come home this evening and hear about the family driving around in the van.

What really struck me was how he told the story. It seems like in the last few months he has made some great leaps in his verbal communication skills. We always expected stuff like this from Lily since she was such a good talker from the beginning. Noah, however, struggled for a while and didn't sound so bright when he was really little. It's nice to hear him becoming more articulate.

Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Our Kids

I don't think that anyone who knows us would ever need genetic proof that these are our children. Yesterday was a good case in point. As a reward for riding his bike without training wheels Noah got 3 days of unlimited electronics He used one day on the ride home and he used the second day on Tuesday. Amanda and I wanted to watch a show, so I left him in the basement playing Wii after dinner. When I took Oreo out at 9:00 I realized that Noah was still downstairs since nobody put him to bed. He was happily playing Wii. Takes me back to those summer evenings when I'd play video games until I could barely walk.

Meanwhile, Lily was engrossed in some 500+ page book that she started yesterday evening around dinnertime. Amanda and I turned off the lights at around 9:30 so I could sleep, but she stayed awake reading. I awoke with a start at 10:30 when I heard her saying Lily's name pretty loudly. I remember the last thing I said to Lily at 9:00 was, "don't stay up too late reading." Apparently she didn't heed that because Amanda noticed light in the hall and when she investigated she found Lily still reading at 10:30.

I also have caught Lily reading in bed with a flashlight. It's tough to punish a child for a thirst for books, but we also have bedtimes for a reason. It's a mixture of pride and frustration when she keeps breaking these rules.

Monday, July 1, 2013

Newfound Freedom

After a year or so of trying Noah finally rode his bike without training wheels. I understand that Lily was instrumental in helping him overcome his fear and just do it. He still needs a little help getting started, but overall he is doing great.

We are going to celebrate with some yogurt at Sweet Frog tonight.