Keebler and Charlotte hike


Went with Keebler on a hike today. We went up to Coal Wind again, it being a good hike for the dogs, as well as kids. I swear Charlotte is cuter every time I see her. I suspect it's the big brown eyes and the curly blone hair that does it. She's going to be a serious heart breaker when she grows up.

She was quite the trooper, too, running up some of the hills and even walking up one backward for an extra workout.


For the record, I never want to take Kris' dogs on a walk ever again. Gah, those dogs are so freaking ANNOYING. I'm so done with trying to herd them in the correct direction.

On a different note, I met Briscoe, Keebler's new black lab. They rescued him from the pound. He seems to be a fabulous dog.


I didn't think the hike was particularly tiresome or hard, but the dogs did,


Now, here's an example of just how badly I overschedule my life. Just as we were finishing up our hike, I received a text message from David about a HackerDojo space that was open for viewing. Having gone to the last one, and being only one of two people there, and knowing that at least David and Brian were going, I didn't think I needed to go. However, since David asked me to go in his message, I felt it necessary to go. So off I went to meet to agent who was showing the space.

With two dogs in the car.

Unable to find parking in the shade.

I took the dogs with me, and they toured a cavernous 10000 ft2 space with me. The space was awesome, but so unfinished I worried about the safety of the place. Still, I have to admit, taking two beagles on a real estate expedition is kinda fun.

Not that I'm going to walk those dogs ever again.

Easiest way to feed the dogs


Yes, still hot


Red shirt


My shoulder itches like you wouldn't believe. Having had the bandage removed earlier today, and scratching around the damned scar-in-the-making for a bit, I thought it would be fine. Now, ANYTHING touching it and moving along it is driving me nuts.

Worse, my bra strap sits squarely over it.

So, I gave up this evening, when working, and decided to go topless. Yes, the only thing that would make this better for Kris, who is sitting next to me in the office, would probably be a beer.

After I removed my shirt, I figured, of course the best place for it was the dog. She disagreed, but not before I was entertained by it. Yes, the only reason to have a dog: to entertain you.




Oh boy!


Oh, boy! Oh, boy, oh, boy, oh, boy, oh, boy, oh, boy, oh, boy!

At my request, Kris ordered a few boxes of Greenies online for the girls. You remember the Greenies, right? Doggie Crack®?

Yeah, well, Kris ordered the Greenies and forgot to tell me he had ordered the Greenies. Thinking he had forgotten to order them, and having a dangerously low supply of Greenies (we have one, as last night), I ordered another batch of Greenies online. I hate buying them in the store. They're about $2.50 each if you buy them in the store and $0.89 each if you buy them online, $0.94 if you include shipping and had to pay for it by not ordering enough Greenies to receive free shipping (usually not a problem in this household).

Bella was happy for the delivery today. If only she REALLY knew what is in those hermetically sealed boxes. Of course, if she did know, I suspect she'd go rabid and kill both Kris and me on the way through the boxes.


Ones I can live without


Bella and I went for a walk today. We went to drop off a book.

I've started cleaning up items that I don't want and piling them up for Freecycling. One of the items was the cookbook, "The Vegetable Dishes I Can't Live Without," by Mollie Katzen, of Moosewood Cookbook fame. The problem with this book is that none of the dishes were interesting. Not one. They may have been vegetable dishes Katzen couldn't live without, but I certainly could.

I registered the book at Book Crossing, and decided to leave the book at the Charles Street Garden. Driving fewer than two miles to drop it off at the garden seemed like a waste of gas and time to me, but I didn't really want to walk for two hours to drop off the book either. Bella solved my dilema by harrassing me for a half hour, begging me to play with her, play with her, play, play, play.

I offered a walk, and she accepted.

So, off we went to walk.

She did well. She shifted into her "I'm on my own hike" pace and walked pretty much straight over to the garden. Maybe she sensed we were on a mission, since I wanted to finish my hour of walking in only an hour, not two by dragging the dog. I don't really know.

She was, however, a trooper, walking the whole way with a nice, crisp pace. We dropped our book off and left. Here's hoping it finds someone who enjoys it.


A boy and his dog


Kris has a habit of reading in bed before he goes to sleep at night. Bella has a habit of jumping on the bed and burrowing under the covers. Together, they make a really cute picture.




Why was I so dumb?



Wait wait wait.


What was I thinking when I decided to take two dogs in the car to go pick Mom up from the airport?


I don't know and it was one of the stupidest ideas I've had in a long time.

I don't know what I was thinking. Maybe that it's cute when Kris does it when he picks me up from the airport? I don't know.

I DO know I won't be doing that retarded move again.


Pick on someone your own size


It's been raining a lot as of late. As a result, I haven't been walking the dogs as much as I should be. Of course, I say "I" in that sentence, when the dogs are really Kris' so maybe HE should be walking them more than he does. Maybe?

This past weekend, as I was working at the dining area table, Bella came up to my chair and sat down next to me. She would occasionally reach up and put a paw on my lap, as if to ask, "Hey, will you pay attention to me?" I kept brushing her off, intent on my work, but she was insistent.

Eventually, I realized it would be easier to just take her outside, let her see that it was raining, let her soak through, and bring her back inside, than it would be to tell her to go away, so off we went, me bundled up in my rain jacket, Bella on her leash.


I'm a big fan of just letting the dog walk where she wants to walk when on leash, but nudging her away from areas I don't want her walking. Following our normal pattern, I walked out the door and turned left for our usual walk.

I managed to walk all of maybe 10 meters before Bella started tugging on her leash. I turned back around to look at her, and noticed that she was sniffing the plants near our driveway, and not moving away from it. Figuring, "YAY! She's already bored of the walk!" I turned around to walk back up the driveway. Instead of returning to the house, however, Bella wanted to walk the other way. Eh, fine, let's go around the block this way.

We walked to corner, where we paused before crossing the street. We always pause before crossing the street, crossing only on my or Kris' command, so as to prevent them from just blindly running across the street. This time, I chose to let Bella choose which way to cross the street. Without hesitation, she walked straight across the street. Ooooookay, I followed.

We walked along the street, turned right, then turned right again at the next intersection. We walked into a private neighborhood, one with tightly built houses, perfectly grooomed front yards, a private park and big neighborhood housing association payments.

I didn't mind much. It wasn't a neighborhood I'd ever walked through, oddly enough, but it was close enough to home that I was willing to walk around and check it out.

Bella immediately wanted to walk to the left once we went into the neighborhood. I insisted we go through the park in the middle of the neighborhood, but she immediately turned to the left at the first path in the park, so we ended up where she wanted to go anyway.


Though it was overcast and raining slightly, the lighting was still good enough for some nice pictures of the flowers that were out. Yes, yes, THOSE flowers, the ones that could all die if there's a good frost in the next month and a half. Annoying weather.

I continued to follow Bella as we walked around the block. I stopped her a few times for more pictures, but essentially allowed her to set the pace. We walked around the block, down the street, around another corner, and eventually ended up where we entered the small neighborhood. I was pretty much done with the walk, but Bella wanted to continue walking back towards where she first wanted to walk when we entered the neighborhood.

I wasn't in much of a hurry, though I wished I had brought my ipod to listen to the Brothers Karamazov, since this was precisely the right time to be doing so. We continued walking back around the block again. Eventually, Bella started to go off trail, er, sidewalk.


She jumped into the ivy along the side of the sidewalk. She walked up driveways and walkways. She looked around, but eventually continued walking. I figured she was looking for the PERFECT PLACE to go poop.

The PERFECT PLACE. Of course, said perfect place usually involves a lot of ivy and some perfectly inaccessible dumping place which makes poop retrieval a six part operation that includes balancing on one foot while tugging on the leash and leaning over so far that one slip means a face plant in said poop.


She continued around another corner and cross the street. The opposite side of the street didn't have a sidewalk, so I wasn't particularly pleased by this. We walked up a driveway a few steps, something Bella is normally NOT allowed to do, before I pulled her back and walked down the street.

We walked past two hours before the line of parked cars broke and I could let her walk up the next driveway for a few steps. She paused at the end of the driveway. She then lurched forward.


I looked where she was moving, following her gaze up the driveway. After a moment, a large cat leaped out of a small bush by the house door and scurried along the house.

A cat? We've been sniffing out a cat? I laughed. Good girl, Bella! You caught a cat! Good girl!

I will often let Bella walk close to cats, more for a lesson for her than anything else. I figure either the cat will swing out and claw Bella on the nose, teaching her a lesson, or not run, which will confuse Bella and entertain me, or run, at which point I'll just pull back on the leash.

This time, I allowed the leash to go slack so Bella could walk closer to the cat, when I realized, holy crap, THAT'S NOT A CAT.

No, it was an opossum as big as Bella is. It ran along the house, dashed along the bushes at the side of the property, and under the minivan in front of the house, where it stopped. Bella immediately lurched at the opossum, pulling on the leash for all she was worth.

As I tugged backward, I couldn't help but think, "Hey, maybe this will file down her nails."



Eventually, I starting walking away from the small hissing beast, dragging Bella along behind me. I'm sure she would have liked to attack the beast, but I wasn't about to let her. The animal was the same size as she was, giving the opossum a distinct advantage in the fight.

No, maybe if I had Blue and Annie and Bella I'd let them at it. Just Bella? Not a chance. I'm not about to let her pick on someone her own size.