Sunday, August 29, 2004

Toad Away

This evening, at sunset, I went outside and sat on the back porch, admiring the beauty of the sky and spending some quality time with my dog. The dog decided to get down off the porch and fetch his ball, which was laying beside the steps, when suddenly he began growling at something. I said "Get 'em, boy!" and the dog picked up something and carried it to the middle of the yard, where he promptly dropped it and started making "Yuck, that tastes bad!" noises and faces. I looked at what he'd dropped, and lo and behold, it was our toad. We have a common Midwest garden toad living in a small den under a downspout in our backyard, and I don't care if he's there because one toad in the yard means fewer mosquitos overall. But the dog, apparently, doesn't like the toad, because he kept barking at it, dancing around, and then the dog would drop into that funny-looking dog position where his butt's in the air, but his head is down between his front paws, and his ears are up and he looks attentive (or maybe excited). Anyway, he'd get in his butt-in-the-air crouch and bark madly at the toad, who'd take a couple hops, causing the dog to dance around then drop again. I guess maybe you had to be there, but it was quite amusing, especially when Doofus Dog would try to pick up the toad and get a mouthful of whatever nasty tasting stuff toads secrete. After a while, though, I began to worry that the dog's rough play would injure my bug-eating amphibian friend, so I went to the garage, got a gardening glove, went back outside and picked up Toad and put him in by his den. (I guess you could say I "toad" him away. HA!) Anyway, so now Toad is safe and Moose Mutt's had a few treats and a drink to wash away Toad Taste. By that time the sky was nearly dark and I was getting cold, so I went in. I'd had enough adventure for a while. And now it's time to go to bed so I can haul my sorry keister out of bed in the morning and send the girls off to school. Yawn! Good night!

Sunday, August 22, 2004

It's Over

Well, it's over. "What's over?" you may ask. The answer is: several things. The mystery dinner theatre I was performing in is over (has been for a week). The Week of the Deck is over, and the deck is 85% complete. We will (hopefully) be returning to our beloved relative's in two weeks to finish the work. Yes, Labor Day is two weeks away, but it's a family tradition that you Labor on Labor Day. Camping and fun on a holiday? Are you kidding? There's WORK to be done! Also over, almost, is the summer. My daughters will start school on Thursday and for some reason, this year, I'm reluctant to let them go. Of course I'm making them go, but this year I'll miss them being around making noise and messes and not finishing their meals. I don't know why. Maybe it's because they matured so much this summer that I don't want to see it end. But at least I'll have more time for painting! And I've already tidied up around the workshop, so I can get started right away.

One thing that's never over is the work to be done around here, so I best get back to it. My Mom gave me a magnet once that says "If a woman's work is never done, why start?" A nice sentiment, but my husband won't let me use it as an excuse. Oh, well.

Wednesday, August 11, 2004

It's August What?!?

For any of you readers out there who do not live in the upper Midwest, my title line may not make any sense. "It's August 11, what's your problem?" you may be thinking. Wrongo! I KNOW it's August 11, but apparently Mother Nature does not. The average high temperature this time of year is 84, but today we'll only make it to about 63 degrees, or the average high of mid-September. Mind you, I'm not complaining (much). It's kind of a shock to walk outside on an August morning in shorts and have to run back to the garage shivering. But I can handle it. My daughters, on the other hand, have had to make more drastic adaptations. Last night, for instance, while out in the yard riding their bikes, they were wearing sweatpants, sweatshirts, stocking hats and mittens! My husband was so amused by this that he had to videotape it.

Of course, it could be worse. It could be 104, humid and miserable outside, so I guess I'll take 63 degrees and windy. I only hope Mother Nature doesn't wake up much for the next couple of weeks. My husband and I promised a beloved relative that we'd go and help him build a deck, and with our luck the temperatures will soar like the eagles and we'll wish we were shivering again.

P.S. The dog's wounded feet are almost healed. And since my husband is gone, well, guess where Poochie is? (Insert mischevious chuckle here.)

Thursday, August 05, 2004

Hitting the paws button

Yesterday I noticed that our king-sized canine had injured his front paws. Somehow he had gotten sores on the large pads on both his front paws. One of them was bleeding a little, and the dog was limping. Since it was time to go to the vet for a poochie prescription refill anyway, I scheduled an appointment for the vet to see the dog. The doc put an ointment on his sores and wrapped his paws with instructions to keep the wraps on for five days and LIMIT HIS ACTIVITY. Now understand, this is a 3 1/2 year old (neutered) male dog that goes postal whenever he sees a rabbit. Asking me to limit the mutt's activity is like trying to ask a tornado to limit its destruction. Good luck. So now, Moose Mutt is laying in the kitchen being pampered by me and the girls. He's fortunate that there was no infection, and also that he doesn't have to wear one of those ridiculous cone-collars to keep him from biting at his dressings. I use a spray that's a combination of 2/3 bitter apple spray (found at pet stores) and 1/3 Heet arthritis liniment (found only at a small pharmacy in our county seat). That stuff smells horrible, but spray it on his wrappings and the taste of it keeps him from licking and chewing his foot wraps. When Captain Competent (my husband) gets home, he'll probably find a humane way to keep the dog outside - my husband is NOT an indoor pet type person, and also he built a shed with an insulated-two room- heated in the winter- doghouse inside, and therefore does NOT think that Snoogie Dog should be lounging in the kitchen. (I disagree, but then again I think we should also have a couple of cats. That's another story.) In the meantime, though, before Super Hubby gets home from work, I'll let the dog be a people for a while.