Then I had the bright idea to take both dogs with me. I figured they needed to go out anyway, and I didn't want to make two trips to the house. Bad idea.
While the kids followed me to every chore station, the dogs did not. I called and called, and the dogs didn't come back. I already had hay out for the horses, and they weren't going to wait while I rounded up the dogs, so I went about the chores like I normally would.
Squeakers LOVED the horses! She squealed and pointed.
Her older brother was so cute in holding her hand and saying, "C'mon, we have to go feed the chickens now." He walked her along behind me, telling her what we were doing, all the while she was hanging on to her Minnie Mouse sippy cup, emitting squeals of delight and talking in her baby gibberish.
They followed me into the chicken pen, squealing and laughing as the chickens gobbled up their breakfast while I collected the eggs.
The dogs, on the other hand, were another story.
Zoe had run down into the woods...and found, of all things, a deer carcass. Where it came from, I've no clue, but it was fairly decomposed and she pulled it up into my yard. Best I could determine, someone didn't find their kill during deer season. Josie then decided to "help" Zoe and ran over, grabbed a leg, and trotted back to me all proud.
"Drop it!" I yelled. She dropped it, looked at me like I had six heads, and walked away.
I decided it would have been better if I had left either the dogs or the kids in the house, or even both. I couldn't leave the Littles in the yard, unsupervised, while I chased down the unruly pup who hadn't learned farm rules yet. I scooped up Squeakers, grabbed my basket of eggs, and to my son said, "Let's go watch Mickey Mouse." He bounded to the house in glee. I set the eggs on the counter and then settled my son to watch t.v. and put Squeakers down for a nap.
I hurried back outside to round up Josie and get her in the house. Zoe knew she'd "done a bad thing" and was waiting at the back door. Josie, on the other hand, darted for the fence that marks where our property ends and the neighbors begin. This means tripping through tall grasses and tree roots. She must have realized I meant business, because at this point she lays down, rolls to her back, and acts completely submissive. I grabbed her collar and said "Let's go." Go she did! She went to the right, when I went left, around a tree, and down I went.
Josie sat infront of me, mocking me.
Thankfully, I think she got the picture that I was not amused, and she walked nicely to the house without further incident.
Squeakers was sound asleep at this point, exhausted after her morning adventure of "assisting" with the chores and my son was engrossed in Mickey Mouse, so I hurriedly went back out, fed the last two pens, and cleaned up the deer carcass.
The lesson is, toddlers and dogs and chores are not a good combination. At least, not all at the same time.