Posted in Uncategorized

When You Have a Hoo

I used to have several excuses not to get out and run in the mornings.  Here are my best ones:

  1. I am afraid to go out by myself.
  2. I have no running shoes, and am not going to spend $$$ to buy them.
  3. I have no time.
  4. I hate running.
  5. I am really, really afraid to be out by myself, like paralyzed with fear that someone is going to jump me from behind, knock me down into that ditch and do horrible things to my half dead body.  Terrified.  Can’t breathe without crying kind of afraid.


  1. I got a dog, so I am not alone.
  2. I found some really good running shoes for super cheap at Ross.
  3. Actually do have time for it, even if I only get up 30 minutes earlier.
  4. I also hate brushing my teeth (I do–hate doing that), but do it anyway, twice a day.  How is running any different?
  5. I got a dog who is quite protective, is going to end up being pretty tall, and who needs more excercise than he’s currently getting.  I have discovered that if I am busy trying to keep him from eating every perceived threat  that crosses our path, I don’t have time to be afraid.  However, I am fairly certain that any real threat would take one look at Hoo, and let us pass on by.

So, after getting Hoo, I upped my walking in the evenings from “Never” to “Sometimes” and almost “Frequently.”  Not quite, but almost.  This morning, I got up early to go jog with him.  We had a nice time, he and I.  He especially loved it when I stopped to fix my sock and he got to stick his tongue so far into my ear that it tickled my brain, which shocked me so much, I toppled over, and he got to climb on top of me, bat me with his massive paws, and swipe his tongue all the way up the left side of my face.  All this time I’ve been afraid of being mauled by a stranger, and it’s my own puppy who is the beast.  I am a little bit in love with this animal.  Just a little bit.

As we were crossing a street, a coyote ran out in front of us.  The coyote barely registered us, giving us just a glance before trotting on by, but Hoo lost his mind.  I’m not sure if he thought, “My people!” or if he thought, “My dinner!” but he wanted that coyote so bad he nearly took my arm out of socket.  The coyote appeared to want a nice thigh from the unwitting warriors out doing the boot camp session in the rec center parking lot. 

They had no idea they were being sized up by a wild animal.  The coyote stood on the edge of the parking lot, eyeing them for a few seconds, then he shot on into the woods.  I guess he didn’t see a weak one he could separate from the pack.  Boot Campers, you lived to see another day! 

We were only out for about 30 minutes, but Hoo was very happy about the outing.  I was, too.  It was nice to get out and go.  Did I run?  Not even a 10th of the way, but I did walk so quickly I might as well have been jogging.  Now my excuse is that my socks come off when I run, so I need new socks, I guess.

I will never like running, but I will always like walking the dog.

My handsome prince.  I love his ears, and his eyebrows, and his beard, and even his sloppy tongue.
My handsome prince who drives away fears. I love his ears, and his eyebrows, and his beard, and even his sloppy tongue.
Posted in Health, Women

Sunny-Side Up

You know, having the dog has made something work for me in the mathematics of our household.  We seem to have the right number of living creatures in the pack now, and I’m going to credit Hoo for one of the first not-sad-this-week-out-of-the-month I’ve had in about five years.  Puppies are babies, after all, and I haven’t begrudged the little guy one early morning.  In fact, I’ve been setting my alarm to make sure I get up before his bladder does.

Hoo has been sleeping in his kennel, in Thor’s bedroom, and Thor finds this development suitable.  He told me he would still rather have a brother to share his room.  I told him that ship had sailed.  He said, “It’s all because you refuse to lay any more eggs, isn’t it?”  I blinked at him, remembering the couple of frank where-babies-come-from talks we’ve had, shrugged and agreed.  Yes.  I refuse to lay any more eggs.  I guess we’ll revisit that whole birds and bees thing at a later date.

While Hoo gets some credit, I should probably also credit my decision to take some control over having felt emotionally out of control for a while.  Whereas the emotional angst of PMS used to hit me for a couple of days out of the month, it had progressed to the point that it was taking up 7 to 9 days on either side of the M.  I had gone to the vitamin store and read the backs of forty bottles claiming to help just that thing, but ended up with a multi-vitamin and a B12.  Since I’m giving credit, it was probably the multi and the B that kept me from going down like the castle walls of Helm’s Deep when the flu bug hit.  (I was more like a Flaming Ent than that.  Just a lot of flapping and wailing.)

I finally asked my mother what advice she had to give, and after two weeks of dosing myself with the above and Wild Yam and Chaste Tree, Evening Primrose Oil, and Nutri-Calm, I’m not sobbing over free burritos for wounded warriors.  Just in time for the holidays!  I did not melt down crying once over the holidays (which I normally do), and those holidays included a puppy, an unexpected snowfall/ice hazard, and a trip to the ER with a dehydrated child.

I am skeptical enough to think that at least some of it is a placebo effect, but faithful enough to holistic healing to believe I’m doing something good for my body and reaping the benefits.  Either way, I’m not beside myself with suffering to match my early teen years, so I’m not going to knock it.


Posted in parenting, pets

The Perot and The Puppy

Every year, we do a Family Christmas Outing.  This year, we went to the opening of the new Perot Museum of Nature and Science.  It is an excellent museum, and an excellent value for what is available to you.  B and I have been looking forward to this for a couple of years, and it didn’t disappoint!  I didn’t take any pictures inside the exhibit hall because it was incredibly crowded and any photos would have been mainly of the backs of strangers’ heads, or other people pointing  cameras, but I did take a few shots of my little GQ man.

I don't pose him.  No.  This is one of his "action spy" poses.
I don’t pose him. No. This is one of his “action spy” poses.
Leap frog in the courtyard.
Leap frog in the courtyard.

Thor was really happy with all the interactive items in the museum.  It is 4 floors of finger-food for thought, well designed to be interesting to all age groups.  I was impressed with the layout, the natural lighting, and the friendliness of the staff.

We watched a 3-D movie about prehistoric sea-life in a nice sized theater (I did not need to see that 3-D shark, thank you), and will go back again to see the 3-D meerkat movie that Thor was sorry to miss.  I wimped out (due to knee trouble) before seeing the animal/human life exhibit, and the physics, engineering, and robotics sections, but B assured me they were well worth seeing when the museum isn’t so crowded.  We went ahead and bought a membership, so we can go regularly.

Meanwhile, my mom and I have been working hard to conceal the existence of the Christmas Puppy.  Thor went to spend the night with her on Thursday, so when I left work, I went straight to her house and collected the dog, while she went to our place to collect the child.  When she returned the boy, this morning, I hid in the back yard with the puppy, and ran him (in his kennel) and all his accessories into her car, while they went in the front door.

We still haven’t planned out exactly how we will a) get the dog back over here on Christmas without Thor knowing it, or b) how we will do the big reveal, but I’m pretty excited.  I might be more excited than Thor will end up being.  I told B, and I know it sounds ridiculous, but with the dog it feels like we have the right number of living things in the household.  That feels pretty darned good.

He plays ball with all the energy of a puppy.  Which is perfectly normal, and also hilarious.
He plays ball with all the energy of a puppy. Which is perfectly normal, and also hilarious.
He is an excellent puppy. Right there, he was watching squirrels run across rooftops. Normally, there aren’t slats missing from the fence. A neighbor had an accident, but he is a good neighbor so it will be fixed quickly.

We had two nights with the puppy in our care, and had the same experience Mom has had.  He goes into his kennel quietly, sleeps through the night, and understands where to do his business.  I was amazed that he already understands how to play fetch, but I might be underestimating at what age puppies do things.  It’s been a long time since I’ve had a healthy puppy in the house.

He seems to be the right mix between playful and cuddly, considering he was happy to sit on my lap for over an hour, while B and I made our way through the last part of the first season of Parks and Recreation.  Makes a good thigh warmer!  I think he and Thor are going to get along just fine.  I only worry that he’s going to end up with a name that will be a cause for ridicule in the dog park.