We love to be outside, especially this last week since it has cooled off some. When we're out there, there's one thing both kids love to do: play with the animals. Our cat, Tippy, is so patient with both of them. A month or so ago, Caroline decided that Tippy needed to be on the deck with her - not by the shed which is her usual hangout. She picked the poor cat up and carried her underneath the armpits to the house. Hind paws and tail dragging, Caroline walked her to the deck, tripping and stepping on Tippy's appendages as she went. That cat just took it. Then she sat on the deck and let Caroline love on her and play with her. So about 10 minutes go by and Caroline decides they should head back to the shed. So she picks kitty up - this time catching her under the hips and makes the trek back, this time with front paws and head hitting the ground and being kicked and stepped on (accidentally) with every step. Again, she just lets herself be hauled wherever. The only thing she wouldn't put up with was being shoved into the little cat house my nephew made for her last summer. Other than that, she was happy to let Caroline do whatever. She's the same with Clayton. He can stick his fingers in her nose and pull her tail and ears and she doesn't do anything. The only time we had a tiny problem was the first time Clayton tried to pat her. He had just figured out the movement and she thought his "pat, pat, pat" was an invitation to play. She tried to "pat, pat, pat" back - with claws. She got in trouble, but not too bad since we could tell she just wanted to play and thought he did, too (which he did - but at 8 months was too little to know claws are ouchy.)
Our other favorite pal is Jasper, Uncle Pete & Aunt Sarah's dog. When Sarah's mom was here she was so impressed that Caroline wasn't scared of this big dog practically running her over. We had to explain that they got the dog as a tiny puppy the same time we had Clayton, so he'd just grown up with her and she was used to him. They're best buddies. When Sarah watched Clayton for me a couple of times (before he was mobile), she said Jasper would just sit next to him or with his paws on either side of him and watch him and act very protective of him. Good training for baby Sophie. Pete gave me this CD last week of pictures from last year so you can see how much both Caroline & Jasper have grown.