Showing posts from July, 2008

A Bit of a Bite Problem

He's a lover, not a biter Last night I got a call from a gentleman wanting to surrender his dog. As a volunteer for a Boxer Rescue organization for the past 8 1/2 years, I've received a lot of calls like this one. Sometimes we can take the dog and sometimes we can't. In this case, we can't. The dog has bitten the man's son three times, including once in the face. The man has two other children and the dog does not have a problem with the other two kids. But the middle child, the one that has been bitten three times, slammed the car door on the dog's foot (leading to the first bite incident) and the dog has not enjoyed the kid's company since that day. Now, it could be that the dog truly just does not trust this one particular kid and that he would be fine with all other kids. But still, we can't take a dog that has bitten. For starters, our attorney and our insurance agent would both go into convulsions if they found out that we'd taken in a dog with

Oh. No. She. Didn't.

Because 3,000 miles of driving on our recent vacation wasn't enough for us, we drove five hours to visit friends for the weekend (you just wish you had our kind of stamina, man). Did you know that it's possible to sing "Little Bunny Foo Foo" for an hour straight? It is - just take my word for it. She did the "boppin' them on the head" hand motions for it every time, too. We did have a nice weekend, once we got to our destination. We were visiting some friends - a guy P has known since his Marine Corps days, plus this friend's wife and kids. They have three boys - they made the third one in the interim since our last visit. We arrived at 6ish on Friday and headed to a kids' fair nearby. The kids rode on a fire truck, played games, and each left with a bag o'crap that they won. I am still trying to scrape a Cinderella tattoo off my kid's arm. We spent Saturday afternoon at a man-made swimming lake. We sat on the course-sand beach while the

And you may ask yourself - well, how did I get here?

And you may find yourself living in a shotgun shack And you may find yourself in another part of the world And you may find yourself behind the wheel of a large automobile And you may find yourself in a beautiful house, with a beautiful wife And you may ask yourself - Well . . . How did I get here? (From " Once in a Lifetime " of course!) Earlier this week an online acquaintance sent me an email to ask if she could pass my email address to a friend of hers. It seems this friend just suffered her third miscarriage and is lost. Does she continue down the path of infertility treatments? Does she consider adoption? I don't know that I have any particular insight to offer this grieving woman but if my "been there done that" status is of any help, I'm happy to give it. When it comes to the heartache of miscarriage, I surely wish I didn't know. But I do. Each passing day with my beautiful daughter softens the sharp corners of my pain, but it is still there.

So cheap it's free

I had two main goals over the weekend: 1) keep the kid occupied and 2) not spend any money. The weekend got off to a rough start. On Saturday morning, I had an appointment to have my van fixed. One tire goes flat at random (which was fun on a cross-country trip) and even though I had asked them to fix it once before, it seems they did not. The other, and perhaps larger, problem is that the AC was not cooling properly. It was sort of a gradual thing and we just kept compensating by turning it up higher and higher. Now, if I was still driving my Explorer, it would not be a huge deal. I would've just opened all the windows and tried to make it through the rest of the summer. But in the van, the sliding doors do not have windows that open. And I have a kid sweltering back there. So I had to take it in. At first the guy starts telling me that I cannot expect the AC to work that well on humid days. He starts asking me questions that lead me to believe that he suspects I may not know the

Unrequited Love

My sister and my kid While on vacation last week, we freeloaded at my middle sister's house. We were grateful to have a place to stay and A, of course, was thrilled to hang out with her cousins. My nine-year-old niece decked out her bedroom in princess decor (and used sidewalk chalk to create a very sweet "welcome to your castle!" message in the driveway when we arrived), and wanted her cousin to sleep in her new trundle bed. A peed in it on the last night we were there, but that's a whole other story. A day or so before we left, my sister was sitting in a chair by her computer. A bounced into the room so my sister scooped her up into her lap and gave her a hug. "I love you!" she said to my smiling daughter. A hopped off her lap, skipped across the room, and replied: "Yes, YOU DO!" We got a good laugh out of that one. I told my sister that it's kind of a throwback to the days of adolescent dating, where you tell some guy that you love him and h

She's going the distance. She's going for speed.

Don't you love Cake ? I do. ( I've got a mind that can steer me to your house, and a heart that can bring you red flowers . . . ) Do you want to know what song is stuck in my brain today, though? The mail song from Blue's Clues. ( Here's the mail, it never fails, it makes me wanna wag my tail . . . ) I don't know if Noggin is having some sort of Blue's Clues marathon lately or what, but it is on CONSTANTLY. But back to the topic at hand: my friend Selena wants to know why I'm always the driver on family trips. An excellent question, mon amie. And I'll tell you. I drive because my husband is . . . not a good driver. Honestly, I don't even know if he'd argue with that statement. He's had a lot of fender-benders and we've got the insurance rates to prove it. My all-time favorite was when he rear-ended a cop car. The cop (ahem, police officer) had pulled over another driver and P temporarily forgot that the car in front of you needs to be m

Oops (Plus Random Vacation Thoughts)

Remember about six months ago when my iPod went missing? I blamed a random anonymous youth at the Y for taking it. I also blamed P for leaving my purse sitting on the floor unattended for 1/2 hour while the kid and I were in a Mommy & Me swim class. Well, guess what turned up on Saturday? We were unloading our car at the beach and I heard P say, "Hey, isn't that an iPod?" The second and third row seats in our van can be folded into the floor. The third row simply folds down, but the second row contains two "Captain's Chairs" and those fold up and then each one slides into its respective hole in the floor. Well, "slides" is pushing it a little - it is not as easy as it looks in the commercials, trust me. On the commercials it almost seemed like you could stow those buggers with simply the power of your thoughts, when in reality you pretty much have to break a sweat to get 'er done. When the chairs are not being stowed, those two compartments

Winding Down

Our happy little vacation is winding down. We are leaving VA tomorrow and it looks like we are going to head up to the Jersey Shore to spend a day at the beach. Originally, we were supposed to visit a childhood friend of mine (who lives near Philly), but she has a family emergency and won't be around. So, even though it is totally impractical and definitely out of our budget, we have decided to head off-course a bit. The kid has been to the ocean, but only in November. So we don't want to miss our chance to put our toes in the sand and get slapped around by a few waves. We haven't figured out what we'll do about a hotel room - quelle adventure! The Wolf Trap show that was on our agenda for Wednesday was canceled because of rain (it is an outdoor venue). So, we developed a Plan B, which was to go bowling and then to see WALL-E. The kid had never been bowling before, so we thought this would be as good a time as any to take her. This bowling alley was different f

Settling into vacation mode

The vacay is going well. The kid is having a good time playing with her cousins. She gives her boy cousin (age 4) a rack of shit every chance she gets, though. She thinks that being a cousin is an elected position and that she can throw him out of office whenever she wants. "He's not my cousin anymore!" she says when she gets mad at him. She also announced that when her cousin was a baby, he was in her tummy. So yeah, the poor kid is pretty confused. It's no wonder we've continued to drag our feet about the whole "you're adopted" conversation. The other day I asked her, "Are you being sassy?" and she said, "No, I'm a begetarian!" On Sunday night we got a sitter and went out with my sister and her boyfriend. My sister and I proceeded to get plowed and then to sing Journey songs while playing pool. And trust me when I say I do NOT play pool, so you know I had to be pretty far gone even to agree to it. When we got

Oh, the drama

So, I'm in Virginia. The trip went pretty well. The day we left, though, was all drama. I dropped my dogs off for boarding on Wednesday night. I got the first call three hours later. Gideon had broken out of a crate (this facility uses crates instead of kennel runs). The owner told me she put him in a different crate and then watched him break out of it. She said that for a dog with so few teeth, it was pretty impressive. She said she would see how the night went, but I could tell things were probably going to take a turn for the worse. When I woke up on Thursday morning (after a restless "what am I gonna do" kind of night), I had an email from her asking me to find a Plan B. I know she felt badly that it wasn't working out, so I wasn't mad - just upset. After whipping myself into a minor frenzy and nearly breaking into tears, I sent an email to my fellow rescue volunteers to ask if anyone knew of a boarding facility where I could take Giddy. With the holiday week

Road Trip

We are leaving tomorrow for a vacation out to the East Coast. Yes, we are the only family in America taking a road trip this summer. No doubt P and I will weep openly each time we have to fill the tank. Raise your hand if you think my husband is packed and ready to go. OR Raise your hand if you think my husband will come home from work tomorrow, throw a single pair of underwear into a bag (for an eleven-day trip) and announce that he is "good to go." I've been packing for several days already, needless to say. I also get to drop the dogs off for boarding and take care of any other vacation-related detail you can possibly think of. He was actually playing online poker last night while I ironed and packed. I mean, he was having fun and really, that's the important thing. I also hope he has fun at that rest stop in Ohio when I give him the slip and take off without him. Another problem (besides my husband) at home is that we are down to one bathroom. We have two bathroo