Posted in Hoo, relationships

A Mighty Hunter is Our Dog

Somehow or other, the Hooberry caught a bird over the weekend.  I know he caught a bird because he laid its headless body at the doorstep and danced around and around it to show me what he had done.  Our mighty hunter, showing his love and devotion to us by giving us the best meat on his kill.  I haven’t been so simultaneously grossed out and in love since the time infant-Thor pooped into the palm of my hand after days of constipation.

I get dry heaves thinking about either.

But, Hoo’s gift made me think about all those love languages again.  I like to think I am not a Gifts person because it seems so materialistic and twee to be a Gifts person.  I want to be something cool and selfless like an Acts of Service person.  Alas. 

Whenever I go somewhere, be it Target or Del Taco, my first thought is, “What can I get [insert name]?”  Not because I think [insert name] needs anything, but just because I love him/her/it and want him/her/it to know I am thinking of them.  Usually, that person is Thor, and he’s easy.  I can buy him a stick of gum and he feels pleased.

I really have to fight the urge–and I mean really fight the urge, you have no idea how difficult this is for me–not to just buy random things for other people all the time.  I feel a swell of fondness, and my answering nature is to buy something.  Cake pops at Starbucks, Carmelo bars at the gas station, post-it notes at the grocery store, $1 bin items at Target, rawhide bones.

You’d only have to know my husband a day to understand why my GiftsGiftsGifts personality could get wearing.  So, I quit trying to buy him presents, and just limit myself to grabbing him a Milky Way dark chocolate bar now and then, instead.

But I get it honestly.  My mother brings random, sometimes useless gifts home for my family all the time.  My grandmother did, too.  I don’t know how many little crystal boxes I ended up with because my grandmother saw one for 25 cents and decided I needed it.  When it wasn’t things, it was food.  Krystal burgers, to be exact.  It is one of my happiest memories, remembering the look that would fall across her face watching me eat a Krystal burger.  I think I ate them more to see her look happy, than because I liked them.  (I don’t like them.  I eat them only out of nostalgia now, and they never taste as good as they did–and they were barely edible then.)

My mother watches Thor that way.  I suppose I do, too. 

He told me, last night, “I love you too much, Mama.  I just think you are perfect, and nothing could make you better, and I want to hug you so hard because I love you, too much.”  I’m thinking my boy is a Words of Affirmation type.

It’s cute that I ended up with a Gifts dog.  At least someone in my family will understand my language!  I just wish he’d learn to shop.


Posted in Hoo, Reviews

A Place Review: Muttworks–Yeah, they do!

Muttworks is a nifty little business model that allows people to “detail” their canine friends, like going to a carwash.  You can drop Rover off to be bathed and groomed by professionals, or you can avail yourself of one of the Muttworks self-service stations and scrub him down to your own satisfaction.

I took our mutt, Hoo, to the groomers when we came back from Port Aransas.  They did a great job of shaping up his shaggy bits, and getting the sand burrs out of his beard, but he had some kind of reaction to whatever soap was used and it was dry skin/dandruff city with the poor guy.  Rather than breaking my back trying to take care of business in the backyard, or grodding out the bathtub, I decided to give Muttworks a try.

Hoo and I hopped in the car and headed over on a Saturday.  Now, I like washing dogs.  I think it’s fun, so I was kind of excited to try this out.  Hoo likes baths.  What could go wrong?

If you have a well behaved dog, nothing. 

Muttworks is cleaner than I had expected, had plenty of space for me to work with Hoo, and lived up to their promise to provide all the products and gear I needed to get my pup in prime shape.  Because I was there while the groomers were working, I got a glimpse into how they treated the animals, and I was pleased with what I saw.


Hoo in a quiet moment.  He was deciding at which dog to bark.  See how his fur is turning brown?!
Hoo in a quiet moment. He was deciding at which dog to bark. See how his fur is turning brown?!


While we were waiting for our tub, Hoo and I sat on the floor, where I could keep better control of him.  Poor, little, ill-behaved monster that he is–professional, in-home training starts Wednesday night.  He was going nuts barking–was just beside himself.  And when the Husky, who was getting her blow out, started to talk back to him…

Listen, when we walked in, Muttworks was quiet and pleasant.  We ruined the atmosphere.  I was that mother in the grocery store with the screaming kid, only my kid had four legs, fur, and wanted to eat you.

Mostly, he looked like this.  An attack muppet.
Mostly, he looked like this. An attack muppet.

For all that, and he barked 80% of the time we were in there, I only got a couple of dirty looks.  The employees were very gracious.

But you want to know about how it all worked.  It worked well!  I got Hoo into a tub, scrubbed him down twice and conditioned him, then helped him onto the grooming table and blew him dry in a quarter of the time it takes with my Conair.  We’d have been finished even faster if he’d cooperated a bit more.

I would definitely go back to Muttworks, but I would try to find a time when there are fewer dogs around.  I’m hoping the training sessions help.  He’s such a barky little guy!

Muttworks gets 4 out of 5 stars from me. 

Why not 5?  Allergies.  I ended up in a snowstorm of Husky fur while that pretty girl was getting her blow out, and I thought my head was going to explode for the rest of the day.  It’s not a place to go if you have any sensitivity at all to dander or fur.  But that’s not something that can be helped. 


Posted in Home Ec, Hoo

Days of Wine and Roses

Things I did today:

  1. Planned meals for the week
  2. Went to the grocery store and bought a rose bush to plant in a hole dog had dug (While B cleaned the house!)
  3. Took off half a toenail with grocery cart wheel
  4. Brought home the groceries*
  5. Put away the groceries
  6. Cooked or prepped to cook meals for the week
  7. Dishes (B had already done one load)
  8. Cleaned up all the dog poop in the yard and pulled weeds
  9. Planted rose bush in a hole dog had dug
  10. Discovered that dog had dug a hole and exposed some cable that shouldn’t have been visible
  11. Worried that dog might think the cable looked good for eating
  12. Went to WalMart for dirt to fill the hole, and bought a tree to put in the hole*
  13. Planted the tree and filled the hole–in the dark, by the light of a flashlight
  14. Sprayed tree and area all around tree with No-Chew spray
  15. Put all the pre-made meals in containers and popped into fridge and freezer
  16. Final load of dishes
  17. Cut finger on broken glass
  18. Repaired finger
  19. Started to sit down and rest, but noticed something strange on the porch
  20. Chased dog around yard with tree roots and palm fronds, growling expletives
  21. Picked up pieces of murdered palm tree and discarded
  22. Poured a large glass of wine
  23. Purchased LivingSocial deal for in-home dog training

I’m ready for Monday.

*With help from the boys

Posted in Hoo

Hoo’s on First

Hoo is what Thor has named his puppy.  It’s an unusual name, but it fits him rather well, as he is an unusual dog.  We really can’t tell what he is.  Animal Services called him an Australian Shepherd, but he has Terrier fur, Schnauzer eyebrows and whiskers, a sleek unfanned tail, and big ole Labrador paws.  He doesn’t appear to have much of a herding instinct, but will steal your cheese pizza when you aren’t looking.

I took him to the vet this morning and dropped him off, and the nurse asked me, “What is his name?”

I said, “Hoo.”

She said, “The dog.  What is his name?”

Thor giggled and I laughed.  “Hoo is the dog’s name.  H-O-O.”

I forsee a great deal of this in his future.  Actually, it works both ways.

I called the clinic to check on him.  “Hi, this is Lane B-,” I said.  “I dropped off my puppy this morning for a check-up.”


“Lane B-,” I said.

“Oh!  No, I meant Hoo, the puppy?  Is Hoo your puppy?”

We both laughed. 

He’s healthy.  They told me how sweet and good he is.  I agreed.

Hoo’s a good boy?  Hoo is.  Yes, he is.  Hoo’s a good boy.