Thursday, August 28, 2014

Closed with a Monsoon Chaser

Finally.  Closing day.  The Handsome One and I made the hour and forty five minute drive through heavy rain in just over two hours.  The rain stopped when we walked into the building.  The rain started up again on the way back.

This was a thick hostile rain.  Nonetheless, we drove through it unconcerned, flushed with excitement.  A dream had been realized.  This is something we've wanted for years and years, little house, big acrage.  It was ours now.

The rain let up. We drove on, feeling strange to be returning to the suburban home we lived in for nearly twenty years.  A house we didn't own anymore.  That closing had occurred a few weeks ago.  We were squatters there now. 

About an hour from the place that used to be home, we sat in traffic that wasn't moving.  The rain left lakes under overpasses and in one section of the highway, caused a mudslide.  A mudslide in Michigan!

That hour drive turned into three.  Closer to the place that we used to call home was the toughest, the wettest.  Again and again, we pushed through several inches of water over the road, gritting our teeth,  hoping that the bow of our utility vehicle was high enough to get us through.  We moved past many stalled cars.  All of them smaller than ours.  They appeared anchored there in the road.  It seemed strange that none of them bobbed in our wake.


The Handsome One and I both had to go to the bathroom-not surprising after 5 hours in the car.  We vowed not to pee until the dogs did.  Our dogs waited for us on the other side of so many flooded roads.  They'd been holding it for nearly 8 hours.

When we finally reached the house, I rushed to the basement to let the dogs out.  They sat in their crates surrounded by water.  Gamely, the dogs marched through the water up the stairs and outside.

The stuff in the basement that couldn't be wrung out had to be thrown away.  It's amazing how much ankle deep water can ruin.

Nearby neighborhoods looked like a tornado had torn through.   Sidewalks were heaped with teetering soggy piles of trash.

 to be continued...

Tuesday, July 29, 2014

Henry is a Teenager

Little dogs grow faster than big dogs, maybe because they have less growing to do.  Well, not to them.  Anyway, a toy breed dog reaches physical maturity at about nine months of age.  A giant breed dog finishes growing at around two years of age. 

Henry, at five months, weighs a whopping 6.6 pounds.  At nine weeks, he weighed 3 pounds.   

Henry is leggy, his torso is longer now.  The other day while wet from a bath, he resembled a Rat Terrier.  How very symbolic in this stage of Henry's development.  (Massive heartfelt apologies to all Rat Terriers!)

So, we're in the yard.  Henry moves his gangly self under the bird feeder and immediately finds something with his mouth. 

What is it that he is about to swallow?  A stick perhaps, that will poke a hole in his intestine?  Some bird poop carrying a bird disease against which his young immune system cannot fight?  

I bellow, "drop it!"  Henry knows the 'drop it/leave it' command. 

The mystery substance still in his mouth, he looks me in the eye, then squats to pee.  Such a good boy does his business outside.  He moves his gangly self to a flowerbed...  

Monday, July 28, 2014


Just a couple brief remarks in between doing the myriad stuff that needs to be done with an impending  move.

Shortly before the lock box was placed on our front doorknob, I got my hair cut.  After telling my hair dresser that we were about to put our home up for sale, she looked off pensively for a moment.  Then she said, "don't worry about it.  Your house will sell in one day."
There are some things I will miss when we move:  the backyard pond, the master bathroom, the bird store, and my hair dresser.    

Friday, July 4, 2014

Breed Profile: Boxer

The Boxer is an athletic amiable dog, prone to antics. 

Due to his strength, eagerness to do things with his people and a short nose allowing for a good grip, the Boxer was originally used to hunt and hold large prey such as bears, wild boar and deer.  In Germany during the 19th century, the Boxer worked with police, performed in circuses and as Butcher's Dogs, their job to keep cattle in slaughter yards under control.

During the World Wars, Boxers served as pack-carriers, sentries and messengers.

Some Boxer Facts

- life span:  10-12 years

- height at shoulder:  21-25 inches

- weight:  50-80 pounds

- the coat is short and smooth.  Colors:  fawn, brindle, with or without white and black markings

Boxers are cheerful sturdy dogs that enjoy being with children.  They usually do OK with other dogs but can sometimes be aggressive with dogs of the same sex.  Cats and Boxers can live in harmony as long as they have been raised together.  Boxers tend to chase small animals such as rabbits and rats (even if you consider these creatures part of the family).

Boxer Manifesto

don't call me high strung.  I am exuberant.

-  I am not an outdoor dog, unless we're doing something fun together outside.  After-words, I expect to return with you to the comfort of your bed

-  those who call me stubborn are obviously not intelligent enough to merit my obedience

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Pop Culture Frenzy, Round 27

Welcome once again to Pop Culture Frenzy.   Superpowers are a popular topic lately. 

In order to maintain the pretense that we care about current prattle, today we'll each explain which superpower we would choose to possess if we had the chance.

I want to be able to read
minds.  Then I could tell
when I'm up against
the narrow minded.
Hostmaster: oh boy.
Molly, what superpower would you want?
I would like the agility of a squirrel.
Not just any squirrel, though. 
A flying squirrel.
Hostmaster:  How about you, Bryan?
I want superpower to write aphorisms. 
Hostmaster:  so you want to be a writer?
I want to be a gnomist.
Hostmaster:  you're dreaming with the super heroes, pal.

I don't need a superpower. 
God has that covered.
You know, Fluffy.
 It's narrow minded people like you
 who ruin it for everybody.

Hostmaster:  oh boy.
Who do you think won this round?
God, of course.
You, da gnomist! 

Monday, June 16, 2014

Not so Alarming

The last few weeks have been a blur of hyper vigilance alternating with crazed inertia.  Truly, I'd forgotten the enormity of mental exhaustion that accompanies the presence of a young puppy in the home.  (It has been seven years since the last puppy!)

Henry is now about 14 weeks old.  He's getting the hang of things.  He knows his name.  He sits on command.  He has a good grasp on where the bathroom is, except now and then when he forgets.

Henry sleeps crated in the bedroom with us.  The other dogs sleep at large on various blankets that blanket the bedroom floor.  This arrangement makes it convenient to zip Henry outside during the night to relieve himself.  Yes.  Convenient.  Well, as convenient as can be expected as you stand in your nightgown on the lawn shining a flashlight beam on a squatting puppy, proclaiming in sleepy enthusiasm, "good boy!".

When the alarm goes off at 5:30am, lately, it feels earlier. 

Over the years, I've experimented with different sounds for the alarm clock.  Buzzers, bells, music.  Buzzers startle me.  Bells annoy me.  Music has the unfortunate tendency to stay in my head all day, a couple of bars repeating maddeningly.  I've finally found what works: the radio set on a talk station - but it must be in a language I don't understand.  This, curiously, is the most neutral way for me to wake.

How do you like to be awakened? 

Friday, June 6, 2014

Sven Swoons

Not much singing going on these days, following a huge spike in Canary music.  Why?  Spring hormones and whatnot.

The boys sang.  The girl tweeted (tweet, as in a bird's vocalization, not some electronic gadget's recording of someone's every fleeting notion).


The hen decides which male she wants for a mate. 


Kimber seemed to prefer Sven.  When Sven was placed in the cage with her.  He fainted.


In spite of this, Kimber layed an egg and sat on it for nearly two weeks.  She and Sven shared the cage with the egg.  A couple of times, briefly, Sven was seen spreading his wings in a manly display.  Kimber hissed at him.

The egg was found broken at the bottom of the cage.  Sven was relocated to his own cage.  He grew light headed upon arrival but did not faint.


Friday, May 30, 2014

New Resident, Bad Dog Ranch

How about them Cowboys?

What do Lois and Mabel think of this new creature?
Interloper.  Irritant.
He is called Henry.