The Doggy Bloggy

The life of a 12-year-old puppy, in love with squeakies and Ol' Roys

It’s the thought that counts, right?

Posted by faiththemutt on January 29, 2012

I know it’s been a very long time since I last posted and I’m fairly certain it will be a very long time for me to post again– but, it’s the thought that counts, right?

At the very least I have several good reasons why I haven’t updated:

1.)

I own this.  I have officially become a homeowner.  I’m not very good at it right now (made a few mistakes already) but I guess that’s all part of the learning experience.  My learning experience started as soon as I tried buying anything at all.  I originally put an offer in on a different house and had it fall through.  Had a pre-approval that was later rescinded due to an error on my bank’s part (did I mention I had a new purchase agreement?) and then several weeks passed, with more and more issues arising and the future looking more bleak for me to begin my journey as a homeowner.

Obviously, things finally came though, but not before I had to get a lawyer involved, got an ulcer and made a very long list of people I will never work with again if I can help it.  Now I’m here and for the most part, it’s pretty exciting that I have a house to call my own and have say over.

2.) I welcomed a new baby into my family, here in my new house.  This is my beautiful Harlequin Great Dane, Hank.  I found out about Hank by pure chance, working at the pet store– I met a family who was fostering puppies– I met one one of Hank’s brothers at the time– and over the course of a few weeks, got to meet the rest of the family.  Hank’s mom had been found stray and pregnant.  Believed to be a puppy mill escapee, the family took her in and nursed her back to health.  She was a Great Dane, but with puppies she weighed 79lbs, without she weight 59.  Even as a female Dane, she was clearly underweight and very unhappy with life, to the point she had to be sent to a Great Dane rescue when the puppies were old enough, because she didn’t like men and she didn’t like children.

Because I had met the family before anyone else who had an interest, I was given first choice of the puppies.  Hank had made an impression on my Mom and I, so home he came.  He was 8 weeks old at the time of that picture–  He’s only just 4 months now.  He’s more this size now:

As of Friday, the 27th, he weighs 41.2lbs.  He seriously doesn’t have a clue how huge he is.  It’s hard sometimes, to remember that he’s barely 4 months old given how huge he is.  He eats 3 cups of his food, three times a day– I have to try to buy his food ahead, just because he eats so much.  Honestly, it’s a joy to have him, even when he’s naughty (though I might not think it at the time).  My only fear for him is how short a life span Great Danes have.  If he makes it over 7 years old, he’ll be considered an old man.  I’ve heard so many wonderful things about the breed, that I wanted the experience for myself.  I may not be able to not have a Great Dane, after this.

Faith’s opinion of him is slightly less appreciative than mine… Even though he seems to be quite taken with her.

In fact, I’d say her opinion is rather low…

My old lady has gotten over how cute puppies can be.

3.)  Since moving in, I’ve been able to convert at least one of my basement rooms into a happy place for my piggies (I hope to get the other one ready for Baxter & Watson soon), of which I now have three:

The baby, Sammahdi (or Maddi).

I feel much better about things now, now that they have a big space to stretch their legs and get to know each other, without living on top of one another.  They already seem so much happier then they were and I don’t have that guilt that I’m making their lives suck.  I really do love them so much and this makes me truly joyful to see them popcorning around, wheeking happily.

4.) Although I am currently still working both of my jobs, I have just opened (technically, I guess) my in-home business.  Which is really a variety of things, just to get something that might strike someone’s fancy.  I am offering violin lessons and tutoring (since I became an Orton-Gillingham certified tutor back in September AND, Guinea Pig Salon services.

I know, that must sound ridiculous, but they’re all things I’m good at and to be honest, I have had customers at the store call to see if there is a groomer that will deal with their Pig.  Not all Guinea Pigs are sweet when it comes to their maintenance.  Dharma is pretty freaking cute, but try cutting her nails and she will turn into a crazed lunatic.  If I can potentially offer help for fellow Guinea Pig lovers while being able to pay for groceries or a tank of gas, then I see it as a win for everyone.

As for the lessons and tutoring– I want to maintain my skills and I enjoyed teaching when I did it in high school.  I’d like the opportunity again, hopefully, somewhere there’s a kid who wants someone to teach them and also be understanding that practicing 20 hours a day, is hardly a kid’s dream.  I like working one on one with kids, something that I’ve had the privilege of doing at my full time job.  Now that I have the space to offer any of these things from my home, I’m hoping I’ll get takers.

So that’s what’s been going on here.  And those are my excuses for not updating sooner.  Had nothing to do with being lazy, or under-motivated to type up an entire blog post…  Nooooo.  We’ll just stick with that.

Anyway, I will not promise to be faithful in updating this, as usual.  However, I will try harder.  It’s not like I can say I’m too busy living at my parents’ house!

Until then,

Jaina & the Gang

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Posted in Baxter, Buddha, Dharma, Evie, Faith, Hank, Love, Puppies, Sammahdi | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

I knew that…

Posted by faiththemutt on October 4, 2011

I just read an article (nothing overly scientific) on Yahoo News entitled “Do Animals Smile?”– Now, anyone who knows me, knows that I absolutely believe that animals have emotions and feelings and yes, they smile.

Tell me that's not a smile...

I didn’t really need an empirical study to feel this, but it’s a little reaffirming to see it somewhere that’s not myself:

According to Professor Nicholas Dodman, head of animal behavior at the Cummings School of Veterinary Medicine at Tufts School of Medicine and a regular on Animal Planet’sDogs 101 and Cats 101, until recently, scientists have generally underestimated the emotional range of animals.

No really?

I’ve been a pet owner for 23 years–  I have believed for all 23 of those years, that every animal I’ve had in my life has had a personality, a smile and emotional range.

… today it is widely understood by scientists that mammals do experience primary emotions such as fear, sadness, anger, and happiness and even some secondary emotions like jealously and embarrassment—and they communicate them. Dodman says that dogs even have a sense of humor and laugh with a kind of huffing sound.

I have several stories that can attest to this– most recently with Luka:

Angelic... Not

The first time I really saw a dog be embarrassed, was a few months ago– Luka likes to sit on Mom’s ottoman (as seen above).  He really shouldn’t be up there, he knows he really shouldn’t be up there and Mom tells him he really shouldn’t be up there, but it kind of just happens anyway.  On this particular day, Luka was messing around on the ottoman, playing with a toy and not paying attention to what he was doing.  I tried warning him that he was particularly close to falling off from where he was, but since he’s a dog and he wasn’t even a year old yet… He didn’t listen.  Annnnd as I and everyone else in the room suspected, he fell off.  And not very flatteringly.

Needless to say, he was shocked and we all started laughing.  He became intensely embarrassed, he howled at us as we giggled over his gracelessness and kidney punched my Dad as he stood by and had a good laugh over his fall from his pedestal.  I’ve never seen a dog have such a reaction to people laughing at them before, but he genuinely seemed annoyed that we even dared.

The second was also a Luka experience and just happened this Monday.  My Dad had intended to take both Luka and Mystic for a walk.  Something Luka desperately loves and is even willing to leave toys for.  We’ve been watching a lot of Cesar Millan recently and Cesar says when you’re preparing for a walk, your dog should be calm submissive.  Well.  Luka was neither calm, nor was he submissive.  Mom warned him and gave him commands to calm down and he just wouldn’t.  So she sent Dad off with Mystic in tow and Luka– I kid you not– pouted.  Like this:

For over an hour.

This just goes to prove that Luka is a perfect example of how animals, dogs in particular, really do have a wider emotional range than some people give them credit for.  I knew that the minute I met any of my pets they did and I can see it every day, when Faith smiles when I wake her from a bad dream, or Luka laughs when he gets something he steals from someone or Mystic leans into one of us with all the love someone who realizes she has a family now can have.  I was validated even before the Yahoo article, as pointless or invalid as it might seem without pages of research to back it up.

I did my research in real life, that’s all that matters.

I just thought I’d share that, since I’ve been doing such a fabulous job updating.

Here’s the link to the rest of the article if you want to read it in its entirety

Think about it!

Until then,

Jaina

Posted in Baxter, Buddha, Dharma, Evie, Faith, Love, Luka, Mystic, Puppies, The Fish, Watson, Winston | Tagged: , , , , , , | Leave a Comment »

I know. I know.

Posted by faiththemutt on August 4, 2011

I was going to do a post about one pet a day and I’ve only done one.  I’ve been a little lazy, yes– I have also had some technical difficulties getting pictures for the post I have ready.  Evie hasn’t really been cooperating.  Also, it’s nearing the end of the summer for my work and I’ve been really tired from activities.  So.  Yeah.  That’s my story and I’m sticking to it!  Hopefully I’ll be back on track soon!

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A Day About: Faith

Posted by faiththemutt on July 26, 2011

I’m hoping to start this thing, just to keep myself thinking about what’s been going on with my animals and I.  For the next week I’m going to try to post about one of my pets a day.  Give them their spotlight as I see I’ve neglected posting about some of my babies, without really meaning to.  I’m also hoping it will get me motivated to take new photos to add to my collection.  I don’t want to miss moments if I can avoid it.  Since I started late in the week, this will probably continue until next Wednesday or until everyone has had their day.  It’ll be a good thing I think, since I’ll be spending time with my animals and honing in on my photography skills, such as they are.

So, I’ll start with the star of this blog, since she hasn’t been featured lately.  Faith.

.

Faith has been my dog and best friend since middle school.  I never met her as a puppy and for the first year or so of her life, neither one of us knew who the other was.  It wasn’t until one fateful night, when my mom and I were out picking up dinner, that a yellow blur brought our van to a screeching halt.  My mom thought she had hit her and stepped out to make sure she was fine.  Less than a minute later, a stinking, muddy, emaciated form was sitting beside me in our van, staring and wagging happily at me.  Though, I didn’t see that as I tried to claw my way out of the car, not knowing if this Gollumesque thing, was friend or foe.  Mom ordered the dog-thing to sit and butt hit car floor almost instantaneously.  When I realized I wasn’t going to be shredded to bits, I took another look and saw the eyes of desperate, but happy dog.  As if she had been waiting for the right family to drive by and stop–

It was her Leap of Faith.

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In the years that have followed, Faith has been a loyal and adoring friend.  She has never asked for anything more than our love and has given much more than she will ever know.  Even the days she was naughty (Chicken bones are hard to resist) or I a lackluster parent, she still remained the faithful dog she’s always been and I’m grateful for that.  She followed me through the rest of my horrible middle school years (pimples and growth spurts galore) and supported me through high school and hours of violin practice.  For two years we lived in a different city, in an apartment where our best times were spent snuggling on my parents’ old couch, watching movies and sharing dinner (well, her kibble bowl was next to my burger) and she never once faltered; even when I was home late from work or I had to focus on studying for a statistics test I was never going to pass even if I wished really, really hard.  She kept me sane, even when it was boring for her.

.

To this day, I look at her and I couldn’t imagine my life without her in it.  I know to her last breath, she will be my friend and confidant (I can tell her things I couldn’t tell anyone and I know she wouldn’t judge me) and that makes me wish with all my heart that she will never have a last breath.  When I look at her, I see such a soulfulness that I’m hard-pressed to find in any other human.  Her dark eyes are grateful and humble and beautiful and that is something so rare to find.  She knows she had a hard life before us and that even through the hard times, she’s in a good place.  We all love her and for me, she leaped her way into my heart in a way I will never recover from.

.

And I adore her.

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Uno

Posted by faiththemutt on July 12, 2011

It feels like, every other time I post on this blog anymore, it’s to write about the death of one my beloveds.  This post is no different and it’s tearing me up.  Every time I get comfortable and think that life has settled down for a while, something else happens and I guess this time was no different.

On July 11th, 2011.  My beloved gerbil, Uno, passed away.

The days before she died, I was away in Minnesota, so I don’t know if she was feeling unwell during the time I was gone or if it was just one of those things.  I had gotten back on the 11th and all seemed well, she greeted me in her usual fashion, though admittedly I wasn’t focusing on anyone in particular.  I was tired from the trip and was trying to get my things prepared for work.  I went to bed fairly late and fell asleep without hearing anything coming from her cage– however this was not unusual as she often went to bed and woke up with me.  Around 5:15 in the morning, I was awoken by a crack of thunder and the sounds of rain and hail beating against the house.  It took me a few moments to realize that not only was it storming, the warning sirens up the street from our house were also going off.  Without having a radio in my room and my weather updates telling me it was just a severe storm, I wasn’t sure what it was, but bundled Buddha and Dharma into their “storm carrier” and went to get Evie and Uno from their cages.  Although Evie was peering at me from her bed, I realized there was no movement from Uno’s, something that wasn’t typical, so I popped open the door of her house expecting her to shoot out and come stare at me.  It took a few moments of me feeling around the cage, before I realized that she was laying on top of her chew house and she wasn’t moving.

It took me completely by surprise and hit me very hard when I realized she was gone.  Of course it was the worst time to come to the conclusion and I was forced to rush Evie into her ball and wrap Uno in a towel so I could get everyone downstairs.  I sat downstairs, very upset about the storms, which I hate with a passion just because it causes a pile up of things that could go wrong and that my gerbil was gone but I couldn’t do much to mourn her at the moment because I still had to find out if the rest of us were needing to worry about our safety.  Finally we decided that the reports were telling us it was strong winds and rain but that we were not in danger of a tornado (doesn’t feel like it watching the news as many people’s homes and property were damaged) and decided to go back to bed.  I had to go upstairs minus one of my loves.

Even though it was almost 6am and I had work the next day I found it very hard to sleep.  I hadn’t put Buddha and Dharma back in their house yet, so I set the carrier on my bed and just let them come out at their own pace.  For once, they were cuddling and I made mention to them that I kind of would like some cuddling too.  I know it seems silly but when I said that, Dharma perked up and stepped a paw out on my comforter, wheeked at me softly and when I motioned for her attention she waddled (yes, they waddle, it’s normal) over to me and snuggled up with me, still wheeking as I pet her.  Buddha, not to be outdone by her younger sister came out to join us a few moments later, but was bold enough to climb up my tummy and stick her face under my chin.  I think we stayed like that for an hour, just cuddling.

Animals are perceptive and I think even the toughest critics would have a hard time denying that.  They both knew I was sad and I cried for a good long while.  I’m not ashamed to say it.  Faith knew too and stayed close to the bed, just watching us and knowing that it hurt me, whatever it was.  I went to work, where my kids were less perceptive to my depression and I spent a very long day trying not to think about there being one less fuzzy face waiting for me when I got home.  When I finally did get home from all of that, my Dad helped me bury my little friend in the backyard, next to some of our peony bushes.  Appropriate as peonies are my favorite flowers and she was one of my favorite gerbils.

I acknowledge that some people will think it’s dumb to be so attached to an animal.  I suppose if you don’t have any or you don’t have an interest in connecting with any, that would make sense.  I would like to think, even though I’m not a member of PETA or even vegetarian, that I do tend to connect with the animals I meet and especially the ones that have come to live with me.  Every single one of them has a personality and I’ve seen it in some way to the point I’ve wanted them to become a part of my family.  Uno was no different.

I met Uno in January of 2010 in the quiet area of the pet store I work at on the weekends.  She had fallen after escaping from a tote in the quarantine area of the store for new animals and was thought to have lost her left eye.  Her eye required daily cleaning and would most likely have to be adopted out because she was no longer in “prime condition”.  In the few weeks I had to get to know her, I knew she needed to join my family of furry friends.  Earning the moniker, Uno.  When I brought her home, her eye hadn’t gotten any better and I was told that likely it never would– it just didn’t seem normal that it would need to be cleaned out everyday with the kind discharge it had.  I took her to the vet and for the first time in my life, spent $66 for an appointment for a gerbil.  There, I was told she not only still had her eye, it was viable and the only reason it was still swollen was because she had Ringworm.  Had I not adopted her and brought her to the vet, she most likely would have died from lack of proper treatment.

Uno brought me a lot of joy.  I had never had a gerbil and had to learn how to care for them very soon after bringing her home.  Did you know, when you have a gerbil, you either get a chewer, a runner, or both?  And you don’t know which one it is until you buy them lots of toys only to find out they don’t want them?  I found out fairly quickly, Uno was a chewer– a beaver in gerbil clothing.  I had gotten her a lovely two-story home, with a “fun ramp” and a nice, quiet wheel.  Only much to my dismay, the wheel was turned to plastic chips and the ramp could no longer be qualified as a ramp after 24 hours.  To which she had to learn to jump up to the second story and decided the nice new *metal* wheel I bought her, was much more fun for sleeping in than running in.  She did however, adore the Nut Knots I brought home from work, where the prize for chewing through a maze of wood chews was a little nut in the middle.  She went through several small ones in a very short amount of time.  Usually two or three to Evie’s one and she always wanted them.  Finally, I just bought the size that was meant for Guinea Pigs and rabbits in the hopes they would last longer.  They did and Uno’s eyes would always get wide when I set one in her house, like I had just given her the grail of chewy toys.

She was an excellent doorman, always greeting people when they walked in.  I positioned her cage just so she could see who walked in.  Even if she was in her bed, if she heard the door open, she would (as my Dad calls it) “up periscope” to see if she knew the newcomer.  She hated running in her exercise ball and if I put her in it and set her on the floor, she would sit there, wringing her paws, wondering when she would ever get back home to her Nut Knot.  Her dislike of running and maybe my being a softie when it comes to treats, led her to be a bit overweight and although I cut down on her treats and fed her no more than anyone else, she still was a little chunky for a gerbil.  I always joked, I was the only person in the U.S. who had a gerbil with a thyroid condition and that if chewing on things counted for exercise, she would be tiny.

She was a messy roommate to be sure– I would clean her house and make everything nice, just in time for her to kick everything out onto my floor.  I went through three birdcage covers just to staunch the mess, but I would buy a million if it meant she was still here.  I can’t even think about cleaning out her cage right now, for fear of starting to cry again.  I miss her so much already.  I think this will always be the worst part of being a pet owner.  Losing one of your loves and getting over it.  I will always remember my little Uno and I wish upon wish that she is happy wherever she is now.

Uno

I love you, Uno.  I always will and I hope you’re happy and that someday we’ll see each other again.  Miss you.

-Mom

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Under Construction

Posted by faiththemutt on July 10, 2011

Excuse the mess– I’m trying to find a theme I like again– must be a thing with me.  I get bored after a few months of the same thing and I have yet to find anything I like that isn’t “premium”.  Which, much like the price of gas these days, is ridiculous.

I like this one because I can add a customizable header, but that has to be made first.  Which, of course I’m thrilled about.  Daaaaaad?!?!?!  I have the pictures, I just dunwanna do it.  Until I get that figured out, you’ll have to bear with me changing my mind every few minutes!

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Holidays are… Stressful?

Posted by faiththemutt on July 9, 2011

So, a lot of things happened this 4th of July.

It was not only America’s birthday, but my Mother’s (I won’t tell you which one for fear of death).  We got to visit our family, including two of my cousin’s and their families that we haven’t seen in a very long time.  It was overall, a very nice day and I was happy to have it off, because this summer already seems like it’s lasting forever when it’s only just begun.

I do remember the days I longed for school to be out and I was free from the academic for a short while.  Though, that was before I was an “adult” and being paid to care for other people’s children, instead of someone caring for me.  Now I’m actually looking forward to school starting again.

How times change.

Anyway, it was a good day and I was happy to see my family and enjoy good food and a relaxing day.

That is, until we got home.

The dogs had been good, despite it being a long day in the house and us forgetting to put the trashcan out of reach, which I’m sure was a temptation beyond all temptations.  We let them out to do their business for a while and when it was time for dinner, we discovered something was amiss.

Luka and Mystic were gone.

Dumb

Dumber

Apparently, someone had come into the backyard during the day and left the gate open, which of course gave the dogs the opportunity to run away.  Before I go off on a rant about inconsiderate boobs, let me tell you something that will shock you.

Luka came back.

It happens!!

Let me allow that to sink in for a moment.

……………………

Are you scraping your mouth up off the floor?  I was.  Mom wants everyone to think that he wanted to be good and came back for that, but in all honesty.  He hadn’t been fed yet.  It was, as we call it at our house, “dog o’clock” and Luka most likely realizing that with his rumbling tummy.  Regardless of his motives, I am very proud of him for coming back when he could have easily run and been in danger of being hit by a car.  He was a good boy, albeit motivated, boy.

Mystic on the other hand, didn’t seem to care it was Dog o’clock, one way or another and headed for the hills.  Although generally she’s a very good dog, she’s spent so much time going from family to family to family her training has been limited.  When the opportunity to explore arose, she took it.  It was just a horrible day for it to happen.  She had already been gone for half an hour and could be anywhere.  All of us piled into our cars and spent over an hour searching our neighborhood.  I, of course, was in tears most of that time, thinking about all the things that might happen to her.  She’s afraid of loud noises and raised voices, which—it’s the 4th of July.  That’s pretty much all that happens.  I was afraid that she would get scared and run into traffic and that I would find her lying in the street.  I’ve also heard stories of cretins stealing people’s dogs right out of their backyards and using them in dog fighting rings.  Mystic might look and feel like a tank—but she wouldn’t hurt a fly.  I can’t even imagine her going through something like that and so the thought made me twice as worried.  I had been around our neighborhood what felt like six hundred times and frustration was beginning to set in.  I decided one more time around the elementary school and then I would just have to go home and see if I could leave a message for the animal shelter.  So I head back that way and guess who comes a derp, derping up the street?

My darling tank of a dog.

Derp.

I threw open the door and hollered at her to get in the car, to which she obliged and we finally got to go home.  And I had to fix my make-up.  She did what I figured she was going to do, head for a playground.  She loves kids and people, but I wasn’t sure of her patterns since she hasn’t been with us that long and she hasn’t run since we got her.

I just want to say, I’m used to having to track down dogs.  It’s not the first time someone has wandered away and it’s not the first time it’s made me have a meltdown.  However, someone was in our yard.  I don’t know if they were there to steal something or simply back there to find a lost golf-ball but either way—thanks for being a jerk; because of you, I spent an hour of my life looking for my dog and wondering if she was going to be ok.

I’m really just happy she’s home and I guess she was too.  She’s been very snuggly with me since then, which is unusual since she usually sticks with Dad, but she came upstairs to my room and snuggled with me while I watched a movie and has followed me around like we’re attached.  I kind of love it, I’m just afraid it won’t last now that she’s not in danger of becoming a pancake.

And yes, I purchased them all new ID tags.  they should be coming shortly.

The rest of the week was filled with work and boringness.  That’s ok.  I can’t take more than that.

Until the next crisis,

Jaina

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Zzzzzzzzz

Posted by faiththemutt on June 27, 2011

I have no idea how I’m still awake and I’m COMPLETELY not sure why I’m taking the time to write a post when I’m about two seconds from my face becoming one with my keyboard; I guess I just wanted to share my ridiculous, self-induced afternoon and the results of what I put myself through.

Let me start with why this even became a task for me:

I have fish tanks, for those of you who are still joining us for the first time and maybe haven’t had a chance to read the pet biography pages:

<—- Thattaway. 

I originally started out with a 1 gallon fish tank when I brought home several baby fish from my second job at the pet store.  Then the baby fish got too big for the 1 gallon fish tank, so I took advantage of a sale at said job and got myself 10 gallon tank for $20.  Unfortunately, my baby fish did not handle the switch very well and passed away.  This was a little heartbreaking, since I had raised them from pups, annnnd also frustrating because I had just purchased this tank and now had nothing in it.  However,  unbeknownst to me, it appears our house has old enough pipes, that when I was limited to getting water from the UPSTAIRS bathroom, I was inadvertently exposing my fish to heavy metals.  Thus, I killed them.  Again, heartbreaking, but I at least felt better that it wasn’t necessarily something I had done, just needed to become more educated about.  After discovering this and concocting a potion to fix said problem, I now have a tank that works. (Let me know if you have this problem, as I can easily suggest a quick and inexpensive fix!).  I now have fish (way more guppies than I ever wanted, thanks customer that can’t tell the difference between a male and female guppy!) and a snail and even a frog that seems to be doing pretty well.

Not my tank, but a good representation of what mine looked like after all the fish deaths.

I also have a 5 gallon tank, that houses my Green Spotted Puffer, Winston.  Winston is very special to me, in the few short months I’ve known him, he’s actually proven to be very intelligent, fierce and resilient despite my numerous attempts of unwitting homicide.  Although I had done my research on Winston’s brethren, I was and still am fairly inexperienced in their care.  I am still grasping the concept of proper salinity and the fact I need to be vigilant about water changes as he’s in a tank that will eventually be too small for him.  And he’s really good at pooping.  Combine those three not being taken care of and you have a very sick fish.  Which I found out last month, when Winston was nearly knocking on his tank sides to get my attention he wasn’t feeling good.  I have upped my game and thankfully he’s still with us.  I should have realized he’d be a fighter from the moment I met him though, as he was waiting patiently at Wal-Mart for someone to find him.  WAL-MART!  Don’t even get me started.  I might have my fish in a small tank, but at LEAST I know he’s taken care of and he looks infinitely better than he did there.  I have witnesses.

We're good folks, I promise!

Anyway, this long and very drawn out, insomnia forced story has a point–ish?

I had a desk that I had my tanks on, but it wasn’t in the most ideal of places.  The desk had just fit into a dormer in my room which had been fine for my computer and homework, but add the tanks and it became less so.  It was hard to reach the tank to siphon or do full water changes and once I added Winston, I couldn’t see parts of my tank to make sure everyone was ok and there was nothing strange going on.  So I purchased this:

This one.

It was on sale and although it did NOT match my room decor, I figured it would be easy enough to paint it and make it work.

Holy crap, how wrong was I?

This piece of **** must have had EVERY water resistant paint, lacquer and sealant known to man used on it. AND IT’S PARTICLE BOARD!  I sanded that sucker within an inch of it’s life but every paint my Dad tried on it peeled off or crackled.  I had talked him into painting some designs on it to make it go even more with my room, but it took over a month just to find a paint that STUCK to the damn thing!  It ended up accepting a spray paint, sort of, which, if you bump into it, flakes off or scratches, but whatever.  At least it’s the “heirloom” white I was hoping for.  Took three months, but hey, it’s up now.

My Dad has requested I never buy another one of these again.

Long story short (not really), once it became clear it was actually going to work and be put together, I had to figure out how I was going to get it into my room.  Although I love my room, and it’s technically the biggest in the house, space is an issue.  I have a few pieces I got for my apartment three or four years ago that I wanted to take with me when I moved back in with my parents, so that does chew up wall space.  I sat down last night and devised a potential set-up that required me to be heavy-handed with what I intended to keep.  This afternoon after we got home from lunch, I got to work and rearranged all but two pieces of furniture in my room.  By myself.  Single-handedly.  On my own.  And boy am I going to pay for it later.  I don’t think my right bicep has stopped twitching for at least an hour.  Although I doubt it’s considered Feng-Shui, I’m happy with the results.

I have to be, or, as Jack Sparrow once said, “I hope everyone saw that, because I will not be doing it, again.”

It might not be the prettiest set up to most people, but at least now it’s more conducive to my fish being cared for.  I’m less afraid of it breaking this than I was the desk as the stand is a little sturdier than the desk was.  I can also reach my window again, which is a joyous experience now that it’s getting warmer and warmer up here.

AND, this is exciting for me and hopefully will be for my pigs too; now that I’ve moved my computer/TV to the other side of the room.  The pigs have the whole wall to themselves!

Don't look too hard, ran out of energy to clean their Royal Messinesses' cage.

Excuse the clutter, I had to choose which side of the room (I almost spelled tomb, subliminal?  I think so) to finish first, so they got a quick vacuum and I’ll get to it sometime tomorrow.  This will be more exciting in the next however many weeks because I will be upgrading them (hopefully they consider it an upgrade) to a C&C cage, or my own version if I can find the right materials.

For example…

I would love to make one just like this for them, but even with the newly acquired square footage, I don’t think it’ll be possible.  I will of course make a top for it, as we have dogs in the house that don’t understand little fuzzy things are for looking at, not munching on.  It looks insanely simple, but I have to make sure if I make it myself that the grids are not too wide for them to get their heads stuck in.  Buddha may be smart enough to stay away from that, but Dharma– is a special flower.  She does what she does and doesn’t really think about it.  How do I know this?

She’s knocked their water bottle off the cage 4+ times a night, every night for the last month.  I don’t know what she’s trying to tell me, but she’s grounded.

I know there’s a lot of people out their that probably think I’m a nut for the amount of time and money I put into my animals (I think I’m related to at least two of them).  They’re right.  I am a nut, but at least I’m a happy nut.  They bring me joy and if I can give that back to them in any amount, whether by letting them stretch their legs outside for a grassy snack, chop their veggies into chewable bites or make sure they have enough space to be happy, then I’ll do it.  I may fall behind on clean-up or playtime, but I do try (I think) and it is important to me.

This is the face of a dog who doesn't get why Mom is getting emotional.

Had to get some Faith love in there, somewhere.

Ok.  I think I’ve wasted enough time on here.  I congratulate you if you actually read the post and didn’t just look at the pictures.  I don’t blame if you did, I might too, but I figured I had to have worked half my weight in sweat off this afternoon trying to get the majority of this furniture moving done.  Might as well share my accomplishments.

I’m not very good at finishing things and when I do, it’s a milestone, so why not celebrate?  Everyone pack your bags, we’re going to Disney World!

I need sleep!
Until then,

Jaina

Posted in Faith, The Fish, Winston | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment »

Sunshine… Rain. It’s all the Same in Iowa

Posted by faiththemutt on June 19, 2011

I got out of work this afternoon, as planned and boy was I glad to be done.  I figured it was nice enough, that I would let Buddha and Dharma enjoy the day before it started to rain.  They’d never been outside before and they got to borrow Baxter’s playpen just to check out the scenery.  Mom was nice enough to watch them for me so I could get my camera or we’d be stuck with some really crappy cell phone pictures.

Whoa, crazy hair!

What is this?

Mom trying to tempt Buddha with a piece of Clover.

"Do you see anything?" "No, do you?" "The grass on the other side of this thing must be *way* better!"

Annnnngry Dharma

Yay, grass!-- What's grass?

*Phoo* *Phoooo* Your hair is in mah face!

*Phoo* Really--

Oooh, leaf!

It started raining shortly after I got them outside.

Rain!?!

They still enjoyed themselves and they got to kick up their heels.  They actually enjoyed it so much, when I went to grab them as the rain started to fall faster– they both grabbed a mouthful of grass on the way up, just to have a snack on the way back to their home.  I laughed a little uncontrollably when I saw this.  My girls are hilarious.

How about them pigs, eh?

-Jaina

Posted in Buddha, Dharma, Love | Tagged: , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments »

I Feel Horrible…

Posted by faiththemutt on June 18, 2011

I missed it.

June 16th, our baby puppy, Paisley would have been two years old.

.

Gone too soon my little one…  Happy belated birthday, where ever you are.

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