Tuesday, October 25, 2005

Dear Sweet Puppy

Dear Bella,

While we have been toying with the possibility of starting to leave you at home unsupervised and outside of your kennel for extended periods of time, we are going to need some cooperation on your part if you think it’s going to happen. For a while there it seemed you could be a very good little unsupervised pup, we let you sleep at the end of our bed instead of your kennel every couple days, and this gave you so much puppy pleasure. You would lay there looking out the window or chewing on your little raw-hide, very respectful of our need for a good seven hours of sleep on a weeknight. But lately, we’ve started to see that this little sleeping arrangement may have a few problems, you have been doing some naughty things while we are sleeping. We really want this to work out, not only because we love to make you a happy puppy, but admittedly it alleviates some of our guilt for leaving you home alone for too long some weekends, selfishly giving our social life more importance than quality time with your cute doggy self. So, little Bella, there are some things we’re going to need from you if you’d like to retain the privilege of sleeping on our bed once in a while, and hopefully one day spend your time alone in the house outside of the kennel. Please consider the following requests:
  1. Please stay at the foot of the bed, in the corner by the wall and the window. This is your spot, just like daddy has his spot on the outside, next to the alarm. If you meander to the other side, you will be in his territory, and he has much longer legs than mommy, which means there is always a possibility that you will be kicked off the bed over there. Also, we know you sometimes like to sleep in between us, but again, this is not your spot, and we hate when you do this because it really makes spooning very difficult.
  2. Staying in your designated spot also helps accomplish our second request, which is to try to refrain from falling off the bed. Again, since it’s common for you to leave your spot and perch very dangerously on the edge of the bed next to daddy, it’s really not surprising that you often find yourself landing with a big “kurplump” on the hardwood floor. We really don’t want you to get hurt, and we also really hate being woken up suddenly to such a loud noise in the middle of the night. That really freaks us out!
  3. Now, if you are going to keep jumping (or falling) off the bed in the middle of the night, you’re going to really have to learn how to get back on by yourself. We know our bed is very high due to the double pillow-top feature of our less-than-one-year-old mattress, so we’re going to find a cute little stool/ottoman to help you out with this endeavor. However, you’re going to have to cooperate more than you did the other day when we tried to teach you to jump up on the bed using an upside down laundry basket as a stool. We know it didn’t really work out and that you were really confused as to what we were asking you to do, but you’re supposed to be one of the smartest breeds out there for goodness sake. You come from a long line of sheep-herders! We’ve seen you jump higher going after frisbees in the back yard, so we know you can do this.
  4. For the love of God, when we take you outside before bed, know that that is the LAST CHANCE to do your business. We will not be happy when you wake us up at 12:00AM to go poop because you were too busy barking at and chasing after stars an hour before to deal with it then.
  5. Quit with the anal leakage. It is just plain gross, and your daddy would not have put his face so close to it the other day if he knew that that is what that stuff was on our blanket. I don’t blame you entirely for this, though, because if it wasn’t for Auntie Betsy, I wouldn’t even know what anal leakage was. Ignorance is bliss, I tell you.
  6. No barking out the window at scary movement in the neighbor’s yard, because it freaks mommy out. She will end up laying there for 45 minutes, heart racing, unable to sleep, positive that she saw a figure lurking in the shadows of the tree, debating whether or not she should be the crazy lady next door and call the cops about what is most likely the figment of her imagination caused by the unnecessary barking of her dog.
  7. If you’re going to bring a raw-hide up on the bed with you, could you please limit it to just one? It’s getting pretty ridiculous when we find 6 half-chewed raw-hides amongst the covers when we decide on a whim to actually make the bed. That’s really gross. Also, don’t drop one off the bed in the middle of the night and stare at it and pace and whine and cry until Dan or I finally wake up and pick it up for you. That’s really annoying.

So if you promise to work on all of this, we’ll promise to try to be better at waking up when you need to go outside in the morning; we know we’ve been very bad lately. We ignored you on Sunday morning when you were ringing the bell like a maniac, desperate to go outside and release your bladder. It was our fault that we fell back asleep only to wake up an hour and a half later to little puddles of pee by the back door. There was nothing more you could do you poor thing, we were being very bad, very lazy dog parents. We know you are completely potty-trained, that things like that shouldn’t happen, and that we are completely at fault.

Anyways, let’s get working on all this, and hopefully someday soon we’ll be able to start leaving you alone outside your kennel when we go to work!


Mom & Dad

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Mambo Number 5

First things first, Is anyone else SO OVER Desperate Housewives this year? I find myself completely bored with the show as of late (which kills me to admit, since my husband has been saying this all along), and I find Teri Hatcher’s character Susan excessively irritating. All the hype surrounding both her and Eva Longoria has gotten to be too much I think, I am officially sick of them both, sick of it all.

That doesn’t mean I’ll quit watching it though, Sunday nights just wouldn’t feel right without it.

So, this weekend was really busy, as usual. Friday night… well, it’s hard to talk about Friday night without some major mixed emotions. I become enraged just thinking about it, but then moments later I’m amused remembering how ridiculous it all was. The story goes back to last weekend, which was the kick off of the Halloween festivities my friends have dubbed “Scare-fest 2005”. Scare-fest 2005 can be described, really, as a homage to the great holiday that is Halloween and the great season that is Fall where we plan an outing every Friday night throughout the month of October. Last Friday’s event was really fun and low key, we met up for wings and beer before hitting up the Fright Farm in Oakdale. It took a nice, quick 15 minutes to get through the haunted house (which was mildly creepy in a fun, campy, lighthearted way), and afterwards we took a ride on the “Tilt-a-wirl”-esque dinosaur ride, which provided us with a hilariously good time, even though it was obviously geared towards a much younger age group. Afterwards we caravanned on over to Liz and Corey’s place to chill and drink and play The 90’s Game (the best board game EVER). It was a great night, and a perfect way to kick off the month’s festivities.

Now I’ll get back to this Friday, which was definitely the most anticipated event of Scare-fest 2005 because we were going to the Trail of Terror, supposedly the best Halloween event in Minnesota. We first met for dinner at Dangerfield’s, which was really fun, despite some really bad service and a waitress sporting an almost-mullet. At 9:00 we headed over to the Trail of Terror, and we were awestruck at what we found: a HUGE field full of cars and HUGE crowds of people waiting in lines. We had no idea that this thing was such a big deal; apparently we should have done a little more homework. This place had a haunted hayride, a ¾ mile indoor maze, something called the “Halls of Horror”, a bunch of carnival type rides, and a tent with a live band and a dance floor. The lines looked pretty over-whelming for the maze, so we decided to hit up the hayride first. We got into the line around 9:30, and you will not believe what time we actually got onto that stupid ass mother-fucking hayride. Midnight. That’s right, you read that correctly, two and a half hours later. We lost a few in our group due to exhaustion and pregnancy-related nausea half-way through the line, but stubborn ass-holes that we are, we stuck it out. Seriously, two and a half hours of my life, gone, just like that, two and a half hours spent standing in a line, in the cold, amongst hundreds of really strange people. I haven’t been around that many obnoxious teenagers since I was one in high-school, nor have I ever before over-heard a conversation between three really geeky twenty-something men about Clingons, laser-guns, and tractor beams. Oh yes, the freaks were out that night. And they were all around us. Wait…what am I saying? We waited in line for two and a half hours for a f#!%-ing hay-ride, WE are the freaks.

On Saturday, Dan and I joined his parents and his older brother and his wife for an early dinner at Granite City, where I had the most delicious meal I have ever had in all my 24 years of living. I got the Grilled Salmon Oscar, which was a filet of charbroiled salmon topped with crab meat, asparagus, and this awesome béarnaise sauce, served over a bed of rice pilaf and with the most amazing medley of sautéed vegetables (carrots, mushrooms, peapods, broccoli, mmm…). It was seriously, so fricken good. Definitely the highlight of my evening (sad, I know). We then headed to the first themed wedding I have ever been to, the wedding of a friend of Dan’s from way back who I had met maybe twice before. It was an evening ceremony, the invitations looked like tickets to a movie, the ushers wore sunglasses and those ear things as if they were security at a big movie premiere and stood in front of the roped off aisle (adorned with a red carpet of course), there was a director’s chair on the alter, and the programs announced that it was “A Reel Love Story”. Very strange. It was nice, I guess, in a weird sort of way. The bride was absolutely beautiful though, I will give them that. She wore her hair down, which, to this day, I wish I had done. But I shouldn’t admit that, because it’s absolutely ridiculous to be thinking back on things I would do differently at my wedding more than a year ago. It was one day, no big deal.

Anyways, they just had a desert bar at the reception, which was really good, but I wasn’t really feeling the “no-alcohol” thing, I would have given my left arm for a glass of Cabernet Sauvignon. “Hey Ya” is without a doubt one of my favorite songs to dance to at a wedding, so when it came on, my brother-in-law dragged Dan and I out on the dance floor. Once there, I seriously didn’t know what to do, neither did the guys, and we all realized that we have never danced to that song without any alcohol in us. To be honest, I don’t think I’ve ever danced at a wedding to ANY non-slow song without the influence of alcohol, it was the most uncomfortable moment of my life. I bounced around a little, praying for the song to end, and when it did, the three of us bolted back to our table, and shortly there-after, bolted from the reception all together. What a horrific experience.

On Sunday morning I went to Target for a few things and ended up bumming around there for about an hour, I love wandering through Target by myself. I spent like a half hour trying on every single black winter hat they were selling, and settled on a really cute beret, which I know I will get ridiculed for wearing by many friends and family members, but I don’t care. It is so cute, and doesn’t give me hat hair, so I’ll just be telling all the nay-sayers to screw off! I get so excited for new seasons and new lines of clothing coming out, especially in the fall and winter; I think all women would agree that shopping for a funky winter coat is much more enjoyable than shopping for a bikini. Am I right? The only problem is that with the cute winter clothes come cold weather, shorter days, dry skin, horrible traffic, and extremely high heat bills for cute old houses like mine. I’m not going to let myself get all depressed about winter yet though, because we’re still in the middle of a gorgeous fall, and then come Thanksgiving, Christmas, and New Years! So I predict that come January 2nd, I will be singing a different tune, but for now, all is good and right in my world. ;)

Thursday, October 13, 2005


I’ve written a few times in the past week, but then immediately deleted what I had written before posting it because it seemed either a.) boring, b.) fluffy, or c.) embarrassingly self-involved. I have to get over that whole “self-involved” issue though, because it’s no secret that the concept of having a personal blog clearly stems from some form of vanity on the writer’s part. Any blogger who claims that he or she isn’t at least a little bit self-absorbed, or that he or she doesn’t get extreme satisfaction out of strangers leaving comments for them, is so completely full of it. So, since I’ve determined that blogging is, in itself, a self-indulgent exercise, let’s commence today’s narcissistic blathering, guilt free.

I woke up this morning with the horrible realization that it wasn’t Friday yet, which tells you that it has been one ridiculously long week. I’m really getting tired of this working every day thing. Sometimes being a grown-up just really sucks, doesn’t it?

Other than suffering through the mundane hours of 7:30 AM through 5:00 PM at my corporate desk job, my week has been pretty good. Dan and I decided on our Halloween costumes, we will be dressing up as Daphne and Fred from Scooby Doo, so we did a little searching of some local thrift stores and bargain department stores for the necessary pieces to transform ourselves into those crazy funky 70’s ghoul-fighting teens. We had minimal luck at the thrift stores, but I found a really good Daphne costume online, that, with some tweaking and the addition of a fabulous orange wig and some fake eyelashes, will work just splendidly. Dan’s costume is quite a bit easier to put together ourselves, but it’s still in the works, let’s just say he will be rocking those blue polyester pants. I’m really excited for Halloween, I love getting all dressed up, and as long as I don’t go as crazy with the alcohol as last year, our party should be a good time!

In TV news, I am thoroughly obsessed with Lost at the moment, and last night’s episode certainly did not disappoint. I’ve taken my obsession a little bit too far as of late, and have been spending way too much time here speculating on countless theories and meticulously examining screen shot after screen shot for hidden clues to the secrets of the island and the Dharma Initiative. I can’t believe I’ve let myself get so wrapped up in all of this nonsense, but I have to say, that this is some great television.

Belly dancing class last night was hilariously girly, as two separate little events completely disrupted our class but at the same time brought us a little closer together. First, during our warm-up, one of the ladies announced her engagement, and with one little flash of the sparkly ring on her finger, the entire class, including our instructor, had abandoned their stretches and mobbed her for a closer look. After much oohing, ahhing, and high-pitched gushing, everyone meandered back to their spots on the dance floor, and the bride-to-be proceeded to tell the entire proposal story to a room full of women who, for the most part, don’t even know her last name (to be honest, I can’t think of her first name right now). Later on, a delivery person came by with a bouquet of gorgeous fall flowers for our instructor, at which point the high pitched gushing started up again. Without fail, the entire class all shimmied over to the back of the room where she had taken them to get a closer look, (and of course hoping to catch a glimpse of the card that accompanied them!) Choruses of, “They’re so beautiful…” and “You’re so lucky, I NEVER get flowers!” could be heard amongst this mob of fawning women who, at the request of their instructor, continued to shimmy throughout the whole ordeal. Then came the voice of reason from the blonde lady next to me (again, no name, I should really start paying attention to names).

Blond no-name: “So… is he forgiven?”

Instructor chick (as she sticks the card in her purse): “It depends on what the card says!”

The whole time I was just aware of how fabulous it is to be a woman, and how damn important it is to support the rest of our fabulous sisters. Individually, we are magnificent creatures, but together, good Lord we could have so much power! Just think of how productive we would be if, instead of gossiping, instead of comparing our bodies, and instead of putting each other down to bring ourselves up, we supported each other unconditionally. If a woman has a problem, chances are she wouldn’t have to go very far to find another woman who has had that same problem, and has sufficiently kicked that same problem’s ass. There’s just so much girl-on-girl hating going on out there that we’re not able to take advantage of each others’ life experiences and wisdom as often as I think we should.

Alright, I’ll quit with the “chicks need to stick together” ranting. If you want more of it, check out Mascara Feminism. That shit is EXACTLY what I’m talking about! A haphazard group of unrelated women of all different ages, shapes, and sizes, coming together to support two of their own, solely out of kindness and respect, without judgment or criticism, is so Mascara.

Wednesday, October 05, 2005

A poop camel, a Barbie pool, and a baby-mounting dog

Dan and I babysat for the in-laws Friday night, so they could go out, just the two of them, something I don’t think they’ve done in probably years. I’m not exaggerating when I say that the best way to sum up the evening was that it served as a very good reminder to take my birth control. That’s not to say it wasn’t kind of fun, in a crazy experiment kind of way!

So when we got there we were informed that Dan’s 3 year old brother had not pooped in about 5 days, and they had spent the better part of the day trying to will it out of him. My mother-in-law had the little guy running all over the back yard, hoping to give his excretory system that final little push it needed, so that we wouldn’t have to deal with it when the evening came. I truly appreciated her thoughtful efforts, however unsuccessful they were.

I should mention that my husband is the 2nd oldest of 10 children, so we were there to baby-sit the six youngest, at the ages of 1, 3, 5, 8, 10, and 12 (I think…, I may be a little off on a few of the older ones, it’s very difficult to keep track of all their ages.) So you can imagine the chaos that is this household, especially to a girl, such as me, used to a quiet little existence of TV and take-out with her handsome husband and snuggly pup.

The night went like this. Dan played video games with the older boys (who don’t really need a babysitter, but who are, at the same time, not entirely comfortable taking care of the three youngest), and kept an eye on the littlest one, the baby girl, who is the best damn baby I have ever met. Keeping an eye, in this sense, meant that he put her on his lap when she got herself in any trouble, all the while continuing to play Mario Tennis. I had promised the 5 year old girl that I would play Barbies, so I went upstairs with her and her older sister and we broke out the Barbie house and the Barbie jeep. At some point I went downstairs to take a phone call, and discovered that our three year old little poop camel was standing in the middle of the family room, in a very odd position, making some very unusual faces. A peek in his Spiderman underpants found that it was finally coming out, whether he wanted it to or not. Yuck. So I brought him to the bathroom where all hell commenced to break loose. There was screaming, there was crying, he had forgotten to aim his “peeer”down and all the pushing was making things come out of both ends. Somehow he got poop on his feet, legs, and the rug, so I found myself on the ground with a tub of baby wipes trying to get rid of all remnants of poopiness. At this very moment, the 5 year old comes downstairs, weeds her way through our little audience of Dan and the rest of the kids, climbs over the baby gate in front of the bathroom, and crouches down and says, “So, what happened to you? I thought you were going to play Barbies with me, you promised! I have a new idea for what we can do, we can take out the Barbie pool and…” You have got to be kidding me.

Well, so what followed in the next few hours were two more poop incidents, during one of which he again did not make it to the toilet in time. I can’t believe I was naïve enough to think it was all over after the horrible first incident. I have to say though, by the end of the night his attitude, which had started as “pooping is bad, this is horrible, please don’t make me do it,” had evolved into, “Yeah! I pooped! I’m awesome! I can do this!” I felt so proud.

There was one moment where it felt like everything culminated into one big giant affirmation that we were not quite ready to have children. In this moment, I was in the upstairs bathroom with Poopy McPooperson, dealing with incident number three, when I heard the baby screaming at the bottom of the stairs. I yelled for Dan, who was supposedly “watching” her, and I heard the sound of my 6’3, 190 pound husband running through the house to her rescue. At the bottom of the stairs, he found the screaming baby laying flat on her back with our little sheltie pup standing right on top of her! I’m totally serious. I could not make this shit up.

I think for now, we’re perfectly happy with it being just the three of us (Dan, myself, and the pup) in our cozy little home, living our charmed newlywed life. I like my aerobics class on Tuesdays and my belly dancing class on Wednesdays. I like my Sunday nights of un-interrupted Desperate Housewives and Grey’s Anatomy viewing. And I really like having my cute husband all to myself.

Yup, for now, I think we’re doing just fine.