Monday, November 19, 2012

Halloween 2012 (the short version)

We dressed as a family of skeletons for Halloween this year!
The boys are wearing pajamas for their costumes.  Because I am awesome.
None of our kids understand Halloween so I'm sure they were all confused.  We only went to about 4 houses on our street; I wonder how many more years we can get away with that.  

Then we came home and let them eat some candy before calling it a night.  I'm sure the kids were super confused then - we have never before or since just sat in the living room and eaten candy. 
Joel seems confused

Jeremy is in heaven

Jacob was the first to look tired

Friday, November 2, 2012

Our Wonderful Colby

Colby joined our family in April of 2007 when he was only 2 months old.  When we first brought him home we bought a gate with the plan to keep him in the kitchen anytime we weren't at home.  He was so tiny he could fit through the bars of the gate.
Colby's first day in our family

Colby was the perfect dog for our family.

It didn't take long after we had Jacob for Colby to learn what was his and what was not.  This was both good and bad for us.  Good: because it meant that the toys that were left on the floor were safe if we had to leave and they were still out.  It was good to know we didn't have to have everything picked up every single time we had to run off somewhere.  Bad: because it means that it became far, far too common for us to leave toys out on the floor.

Colby loved to chase birds from our yard.  If we were inside and we could see birds out in the backyard, we could call out "Birdies, birdies!!" and he would tear through his doggie door barking and chasing the birds away.  If he was already outside playing (either by himself or with us) and birds flew overhead he would run after them barking.  It seemed as though he was barking "Leave now! You have entered restricted airspace!"  We jokingly always thanked Colby for protecting our yard from those birds.

Colby loved to go to the dog park and his favorite thing to do there was roll around in the mud.  We had to plan to bathe him using the sprayers they had every time we were leaving because he was always covered.
Colby did this EVERY time we took him to the dog park

Colby was a good sport.  He let us put him in a little costume for Halloween each year.
Spider-Dog his first Halloween
Colby's Halloween pajamas

We think that Colby liked bubbles more than the kids did.  If you wanted a sure way to tire out that dog, simply set up a bubble machine outside and he could chase them until he had no energy left at all.  Sometimes we joked that Colby was like the one fish in Finding Nemo that would chase the bubbles saying, "Bubbles!  Bubbles!  My Bubbles!"
It might look like Colby is chasing Joel, but he's after those bubbles

Colby loved for us to throw balls for him and play fetch.  He was even able to jump and catch some balls without even having to chase after them.  And once you started playing with him it could sometimes be very difficult to stop.  He would constantly bring the ball back and drop it in front of you.  If you didn't pick it up and throw it for him he would whine, give a little yelp or stare you down until you were ready to play with him some more.

Colby was a great "sweeper".  He was usually right there when the kids ate, ready to catch food that fell to the floor.  This was great because we didn't need to sweep after every meal.  Not so great because sometimes the kids would throw food down just because he was there to clean up.  Colby also knew anytime I started cutting meat when doing food prep.  He would rush into the kitchen and sit right next to where I was standing with his big eyes and intent look, waiting for some fatty parts of meat to come his way.

Colby was a smart dog.  We only ever took him to 1 6-week puppy training course, but he picked up the "tricks" pretty well.  He understood "sit", "lay down", "wave", "shake", "high five", "park it", "off", and "easy". We think that he probably could have learned more if we had enrolled him in more classes or worked harder with him, but we felt like he was able to do all that we really wanted him to do.
Colby graduating from puppy class

Colby was a great watch-dog.  If someone ever entered our backyard through the gate (like a service person) he would bark like crazy to let us know someone was there that didn't belong.  If we let someone into our house, he was excited and just wanted to get to know them and let them pet him or play with him.  If someone just walked into our house that he didn't really know, he let them know they didn't belong.  Even if we had just let them in, they stepped out and then let themselves back in he would bark and growl to alert us and let them know they shouldn't be here.

Colby knew both times I was pregnant.  During both pregnancies, each and every time I sat on the couch or love seat in our family room he would jump up and sit on my lap with his rear resting on my belly.  Although it wasn't uncommon for him to sit on our laps, he has never rested his rear on my belly when I wasn't pregnant.  It was as if he was trying to help "hatch" the babies.

Colby was so good with our kids.  They might have driven him a little crazy every now and then, but when he was tired of getting pulled on or laid on he would just go to another spot to get his space back.  He was great with the kids when they were babies and I think he liked it when they got to be big enough to throw a ball for him, although he preferred it when an adult played ball with him instead.
Colby watching over baby Jeremy

Colby slept with us every night.  When we first got him we put him in our room in a soft crate and he would whine and whine.  Sometimes we had to banish him to downstairs and close our door to try to drown out his whining.  After we'd had him for a couple months one night he wouldn't stop whining and when I got him out of his crate to take him downstairs he jumped from my arms onto our bed and rolled himself up into a little ball and was quiet.  He slept with us every night after that.  When it was cold it was nice to have a little heater next to us.  (Colby slept with us every night, but we never let any of our kids sleep with us.)

We definitely love our Colby.