Happy November!

Wow, November is here already and according to the date on this blog we haven't posted since August! Here is a little update...

We've had several dinners with good friends complete with a Chilean love song played on the guitar and sung by Mr. Mendez!
(The Boyle and Mendez children sit at the table while the boys play poker and the girls play chess!)
(Mr. and Mrs. Mendez sit near the piano and sing their Chilean love song. Sophia is standing near her mom asking to "pu" -wanting to be picked up!)
Here are the chickens! Haven't they grown? They always come when we call them. And if we eat dinner out on the porch, they come and beg by the gate.
You can see how much bigger the rooster is than the girls. The girls weigh about 4-6 pounds. The rooster weighs about 8-10 pounds! He now has spurs, but he is just as gentle as any of the hens since we've handled him since he was about 2 weeks old. And yes, he likes to stand with his feet crossed. Sometimes he even tips backwards. We think his equilibrium is off :o)
(Jack, the rooster, stands up proud and tall... almost showing off for the camera)  

These are the eggs Kaitlyn collects. We get light brown, dark brown and a greenish blue. The Americana hen is responsible for the beautiful pale easter-like color.
(Kaitlyn took this picture... she found these three different colored eggs in the same nest in the chicken coop)
 Dave recently went to puppy camp. This is when raisers switch dogs for 2-3 weeks. So Dave went to the Shepards while Bentley, the Shepards puppy-in-training, came to our home. Bentley, a handsome chocolate lab, kept us on our toes with his busyness and  goofy antics.
(Bentley lays on the floor with a purple heart shaped toy between his legs)
 While we had Bentley, we took advantage of Florida's free museum day. Of the list of museums, we thought that Cracker Country would be a great exposure for Bent-man.

(Meagan and Bentley standing below the Cracker Country sign)
We celebrated Collin's 14th birthday. It's amazing to think this year, we will have all teenagers in the house!
(As tradition, the birthday person gets breakfast in bed. Collin had raspberry cheese danish)
In order for Collin earn a present. He had to do a form of exercise 14 times. He did push-ups, flutterkicks, squats and sit-ups.
(Collin doing his push ups)
(Dave, as usual was a great helper opening presents!)
Meagan made Collin's cake this year. It was a rice crispy soccer ball. 
(Collin smiling about his goofy looking cake :)
The cake was really dense. In order for it to stay in a ball shape, Meagan had to really press the rice crispy treat together. It took a lot of chewing to eat it!
(Collin's cake cut in half)
 10 days after Collin's birthday, Collin's best friend, Matthew, celebrated his 14th birthday! 
(Matthew blowing out his candles on his yummy oreo cake)

We recently took a trip to Home Depot. This picture was Todd's idea!
(Todd holds a "magnetic stud finder" tool to his chest...)

And to end this random blog post, a picture of Dave with a ski cap on his head :)

We will try harder to keep up with the blog... and with all the upcoming festivities we should have plenty to blog about!!


Water Day

On a Monday when the Douglas kids were over, Diona decided to invite a few more friends over for some water play. So two kids from the French family came, three Mendez children and Matthew M.

We planned a whole water day for them! It started out with a water-balloon war... over 400 water balloons... boys against the girls... with "No Man's Land" separating them... Meagan couldn't help but get in on the action!

Then we had a water bucket war... and Meagan cheated with the garden hose!
Then we had a "throw the water balloon the farthest" competition... but with the BIG balloons...
Each balloon was filled according to the child's size...
 and we went youngest to oldest...
 Matthew D... Great toss, little man!!!
 Joey's balloon rolled quite a ways down the street and then finally popped... he was in the lead!
 Evie's also rolled and popped a few feet away...
 Isaac's pink balloon made a funny splat
 Kelsey... heave, ho!!!
 Zachary... the soccer players had to "throw in" their balloons over their heads
 James.. is that a triangle-shaped balloon??
 Kaitlyn... sssttttretccchhhh....
 Josiah's was the biggest... he got smart and used his head!
 Matthew M's balloon stretched down behind his back and burst open in mid air! SO COOL!!
 Collin... great form!
 Katie... her balloon also rolled down the street and popped... just shy of beating Joey!
The winner (Joey) was awarded 'first-served' at the "make-your-own-sundae" table.
 the second place winner...
 Matthew D. kept adding more and more to his sundae... it was almost over flowing!
 Then the big kids swam...
 and played chicken fight...
 and played four square...
and ended the day with some fresh-baked monkey bread...

And as each happy energetic child left with their parents a few hours later, they asked their exhausted hostess,  "Can we do this again, Mrs. Boyle?"  Her answer was, "Of course!! How about Wednesday?!"
So we did!!!