Monday, March 28, 2011

Who's There?

A few weeks ago, on a beautiful sunny day, we had a visitor.  Well, it wasn't our visitor really, it was our neighbor's.  We never really got a good look at him {he was on the other side of the fence}, but the dogs sure tried.  No one was quite as intent on discovering the visitor's identity as was Lucy.

At first our dogs were friendly & curious.  I was hoping they'd matured a bit from their polar mood swings of the past: either desperately wanting to be friends with any new dog and over-licking, smelling, and general spazzing out thus scaring potential friends away {Other dog, rolling eyes, "weirdos"} or the I-don't-know-you-who-are-you-go-away-now agitated bark-slash-growl.  They were fine this beautiful day, until I came out to snap some (rather bad) pictures.  Perhaps it was the "protective" instinct.  But they all three began to bark, growl, snap and snarl at this poor, sweet thing on the other side of the fence.

The visitor dog simply sniffed.  He was trying hard to be an affable visitor.  He minded his manners and overlooked the first several barrage of dog insults{perhaps they were speaking to someone else}  But after being yelled at repeatedly by strange dogs for no reason, one tends to respond.  And so he did.  A few short barks and he was brought inside.

Dear Mr. Friendly Visitor, I am sorry.  I wanted to be cordial.  Welcoming, even.  I tried to tell my dogs that you were being a model canine, but they were a bit worked up.  I don't know exactly what they said, but I could tell by the tone it wasn't civil.  They really aren't that bad once you get to know them... they can even be too friendly sometimes.  Anyway, I'm sorry we got you into trouble and that you had to go inside on such a beautiful day.  Should you visit again, we will most certainly work on our hospitality skills.
Sincerely,  Heather & two and a half acrimonious dogs

Friday, March 25, 2011

Too Much TV

This is what happens when you are engrossed in the television, and fail to notice the eerie silence in the back yard.  The recent rains have left puddles the size of swimming pools, and apparently it looked like fun to Lucy to snorkel for treasure.  In the mud.  (Ooh, a rock!) {Look!  Bubbles!}

The usual cleaning regimen of baby wipes and shammy towels didn't even make a dent in the ground-in sand and dirt.  Thanks to Super-Dad(he lost the coin toss), Lucy had a bath and ended up looking like this...

More fun in the tub...

Time to dig another hole.

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Welcome Spring!

Spring came and I missed it!  I was in bed, sleeping.  Actually, I'm still in bed, but am catching up on some 221 odd emails in my inbox, and grappling with the guilt of not updating the blog. 

After nearly two weeks of being knocked down by the flu and pneumonia, I am ready for spring!  {Just not ready to get out of bed}  It has been so wonderful to have every window in the house flung wide open, fresh air with just a *touch* of the sea baptizing the house with crisp restoration.

I can't wait to join my kids & the dogs on a walk.  Not there yet... still a few more days of bed rest.  But they have all made it out several days in a row.  Unfortunately, I have no photos.  Sending three kids, two and a half dogs, and a camera does not a successful walk make.  I find a photo-less post rather dull.  It means I must rely on my writing skills.  Which at the moment, are on bed-rest with me. (I'm sure somewhere there's a pillow embroidered with the saying, "friends don't let friends write while on codeine")

That said, I just snuck downstairs and took a few photos...*wheeze* *cough* *don't tell!*

Well, that's it for now.  I just didn't want you to think we had packed up and left town.  Or forgot all our online passwords and could not log on to Blogger.  Or had gotten horribly, horribly sick and never recovered.  We are here.  And I promise a better post next time.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Sick Day

Actually, it's been more like a week for the fam. here at casa  two and a half dogs.  After days of valiantly holding out, Mom and Dad have finally succumbed.  I know it's going around in our neck of the woods, how about yours? 

Be sure to visit us again real soon for more on this:

Here's wishing you good health, peaceful slumber, and that perfect cup of tea!

Friday, March 11, 2011


My mom gave me a book.  Actually, she gives me many books.  Many, many books.  She is a stellar reader, both in book volume and reading agility.  She is often the impetus behind my revolving 7-8 books cluttering up my nightstand at any given time.  She means well; she would read the books as fast as she gives them to me.  In fact, she does.  But I tend to be a more lazy selective reader.  If a book drags for me, I won't stick with it.  Mom will finish it zero to sixty in an afternoon. 

Her latest gift was House of Havoc by Marni Jameson.  I'm hooked.  It's so much more than a book filled with great tips on how to have an aesthetically amazing home.  It's funny, smart, and realistic.  The book is done in such a way that you could easily flip to a chapter on a particular problem you would want to read about.  I started on chapter 4.  It was about dogs. 

In the dog chapter, Marni interviewed Laurence Sheehan, author of Living with Dogs.  When asked, Mr. Sheehan noted that a key to "successful canine cohabitation" is "disaster prevention".  How?  He puts out squeaker toys and leaves the tv on for his dogs so they won't get bored when the family goes out sans furry companions. 

We have always been opposed to any noise inducing toy, be it for our children or for the dogs(see our otolaryngological idiosyncrasies here)  But if a dog toy squeaks when there is no freakazoid human around to hear it, does it make a sound?  Might be something to ponder...

What really got my imagination going was, what would my dogs like to watch on tv?  {WWJW}  What would Jack watch?

I think Jack would quite enjoy daytime talk shows.  Probably most home and garden themed shows as well.   If allowed to over-indulge, he might even find himself hooked on Soaps.  TLC staples such as Say Yes to the Dress & What Not to Wear would be a given.  Providing water on television doesn't petrify him, he'd probably take in synchronized swimming... and for sure ice skating.

Indy would be more inclined towards the Food Network, physical reality shows and definitely ESPN - favoring the likes of Rugby and Lacrosse(Perhaps even in Picture in Picture).  He'd love Bobby Flay, Emeril, and Guy Fieri.  Amazing Race & Survivor?  Absolutely.  Probably would like the hunting and fishing shows, too(did you know there is a Sportsman Channel?)  Oh, and he'd never miss a Pro Surfing Competition. 

Lucy would go more for the intellectual/fasionista/power play entertainment.  I see crime shows, Judge Judy, America's Next Top Model, The Apprentice, and Project Runway on her list o' favs.  Also Roller Derby, for sure!

How about your Furry Friends?  If given the choice, what do you suppose would be on their must-see line up?

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Monday, March 7, 2011

Taking Back the House : Part One

There is something inherently yucky about dog drool.  It can be funny, hanging shoe-lace style and paired with droopy eyes intent on having whatever it is you're having.  But mostly, it's just yucky.  It's yucky on dog toys, tennis balls, and when trying to clean dog food dishes(NASA should look into it for it's relentless lubrication) 

It's at it's yuckiest, however, puddled on a couch.  A microfiber couch.  "The look of suede, yet easy to clean!", they promised.  Thus far, I have disagreed.  It was as if this fabric was made solely for the purpose of sopping up moisture like a shammy, and then proudly displaying the rings declaring just how much it soaked up.  (Yay, look at me!)

I have steam cleaned my beloved couch many times before.  It never stays fresh and drool-free for long, no matter the optimism or intentions.  I loathe the whole steam cleaning process.  The physical toil alone: the back ache, the raw knuckles... it's not worth the momentary glimpse of what once was. 

Never fear, I have found a new trick. Well, new to me.  After I discovered this trick, I googled it to see if others knew.  Turns out they do.  A lot of them, actually.  You may be one of those.  If so, you've just spent x amount of minutes you'll never get back reading this post on what you already knew.  My apologies.

Behold the multi-purpose Baby Wipe!

Instantly remove all watermarks from microfiber.

(See?  Yucky.)




Come on in and have a seat!

Friday, March 4, 2011

Birthday Bowls

Our year starts with a Big Birthday Bang amongst the humans.  We have January, February & March dates, with the later two falling only a week and a day apart.  It is busy to say the least.  Dad claims the February celebration, and his requests are always simple.  "What I really want is for you kids to get along"  has been topping the list for the past 10 years.  Our daughter actually said to me, "I have no idea what to get Dad; the only thing he's asked for is something impossible."  Hmmm.  Next his list was new dog bowls.

The current BIG DOG dishes are a sleek stainless steel.  (I thought they were lovely)  But foot traffic in our kitchen/nook/family room has very little room for error.  The steel bowls, no matter how well placed at meal time, have a way of scooting underfoot whenever one needs a thoroughfare.  The sound the bowls produce when accidentally kicked or tripped over is a resonating jangle.  When thusly attacked, they have the remarkable ability to take flight and make contact with multiple surfaces before crashing back to the ground, magnifying the unpleasant sound.

Growing up, I never really noticed sounds.  I loved music and was attuned to most things melodic in nature, but things such as nails tapping, other people chewing, or incessant whistling were simply not on my radar.  (Often because I was the whistler, not the whistlee)  Fate has a funny way of attracting opposites. 

My dear husband is deeply troubled by background noises: annoyed by loud chewers, tormented by even the happiest of whistlers(sorry, hon!), driven insane by the bowls.  Sympathetic to his distress, the kids and I began searching for bowls as a Christmas gift.  Not finding quite what we were looking for in time for the holidays, his birthday's proximity worked in our favor. 

Steel bowls were of course off the list, even the rubber-footed ones.  Rubber trim would last all of 47.3 seconds in our house with our avid gnawers of the canine variety.  Indy has an allergic reaction to plastic(go figure), so that's out.  We all agreed glass would summon its own adversity.  That left us with ceramic.  One poorly calculated basketball dribble and it's done for.  Still, it was our only option short of paper plates.  We shopped the clearance racks to ease any future guilt and, Ta-Da!

Cute, huh?  

In an effort not to show too much prejudice, we also found a dedicated Lucy bowl.  No more confusing mix-ups. 

It was a Happy {Serene} {Tranquil} Birthday, indeed.

Here's wishing you a happy, bother-free birthday, whenever it may be!


Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Zack always said he wanted a dog family.
(Wonder what that says about us...)