“Gross. I don’t come here to see big fat asses jiggling around,” pixie-of-a-girl said loudly to her friend at the gym, ensuring said fat-assed woman would hear. “Oh my god, I wish I could wear… More
Taboo subject alert: We have had several discussions about re-homing Piper over the past couple years. In fact, a few weeks ago we even began to put out feelers for amazing humans living in amazing situations with yards and kids and dogs and lakes where she could be her amazing self. Then we began to have lots of feels. …,.which to be honest, is quite uncharacteristic for me. I love dogs! BUT I am not one of those people who goes on vacation and sits around missing my dog. I do not call my dogs my children. I do not have dog birthday parties. My dogs own zero articles of clothing. And dogs are not allowed in the bed at night.
Back to Piper. She just turned 2 years old and she is an extremely intelligent dog with a lot of energy. We are a super laid-back low-energy, house. Recently, Piper has spent lots of time with her buddy, Mia. Both at our apartment and at my friend Nicole’s house–that is in the country with a nice big yard that Piper LOVED running around at top speed! Piper LOVES Mia. Mia LOVES Piper. Mia is everything Luna (our Golden Retriver) is not. Luna is an incredibly submissive and delicate flower. She has little to no interest in Pipers shenanigans. There is some playing, but mostly annoyance, and hunkering down or hiding to avoid getting TACKLED, herded, and dragged around by the collar. Not an optimal situation for either pup.
But I can’t let her go. She is 12/10 on the personality and intelligence chart and I love that shit! So we’ve made some renewed commitments to make sure both dogs are getting what they need to be happy. Lots more walks, separate (so Luna can RELAX) and together, and trips to the park run and run and run. Fortunately, both are good off-leash so on hikes and park trips, they can really go FULL SEND. I’ve also been taking the time to really train Piper to walk well on a leash to make it enjoyable for all involved and it’s WORKING! AND I spent today researching local agility training because I KNOW she will love it since she loves playground equipment so much! And we are HOPING a well-trained, well-exercised Piper will be a better friend for Luna. …Or at least be tired enough to take it down a couple notches.
And note-to-self and readers… Just because you have always wanted a German Shepherd or border collie or pug or English setter or husky or teacup poodle, etc doesn’t mean they are the right pup for your situation or that you are the right owner for theirs! Don’t ignore the widely available breed characterisric information …..like I did.
I can’t believe I am about to say this…. but…. here it goes… WE ARE ALL CITIZENS OF EARTH! Lonnie and I are increasingly realizing we want to be GOOD citizens of the earth and that means making choices that are sometimes inconvenient and out of our comfort zones. We started by no longer purchasing bottled water. Lonnie watched a documentary that led to days of research and a proclamation that we were done with bottled water, particularly Coke products. Google “Coca-Cola Murders,” and then check out this list of Coca Cola products once you are rightfully disgusted and horrified. In addition to human rights violations, we are also thinking about our contributions to the negative impact on our environment caused by bottled water. We all know those bottles are going SOMEWHERE, but it’s so easy to just not give a shit for the sake of convenience. Tell me one time you were outside recently and DIDN’T see a bottle on the ground by the side of the road, in the woods, one the beach…..? Again, do your own research and decide for yourself. While you’re at it, do a little research about Poland Springs and the bullshit they have been pulling in Maine, in our own backyard!
Another thing I’ve known for YEARS, and have ignored, is the meat-farming industry is one of the main causes of our declining environment. Here is a good article (Not from PETA — because fuck those guys) to get you started, How Does Meat in the Diet Take an Environmental Toll? Now, let’s not get cray-cray; I *LOVE* MEAT. Steak…chicken…. pork… BACON…. ::::sigh:::: BUT, if I want to be a better citizen of the earth I need to change the way I consume it. So, we are now having a LEAST 1 non-meat dinner a week. One of our first was trying to make fish curry. DO NOT RECOMMEND Mr. I’ll-Eat-Anything Clarke took one bite and considered running away from home. A standout fav of his is a plate of fruits, veg, some kids of break/cracker/pita, and hummus or cheese. It’s a perfect meal for hot summer nights on busy days when we don’t feel like cooking anyway– double bonus! A standout fav of mine is a nice steamy bowl of kimchi fried rice with the kimchi I made, LIKE A BOSS!
We still have oodles of room for improvement to full hippy integration, but for now, these changes are seeming to stick (Especially since I starting writing this post in May and never finished it till today!)
I have been a major blog slacker. Mostly because my writing itch is getting scratched every day by journaling—- believe it or not, I actually DO have SOME private thoughts 😉 I think I am also feeling embarrassed because at the end of June I joined a weight loss group called “Phit n’ Phat” and I feel like every time I start something, everyone collectively groans, “Oh boy….. here we go again!” And I defend myself with… “NO GUYS!! It’s different this time! It really is!!” And guess what. It really is. I knew it was different when I went away with the kids and Lonnie to Boston for the weekend and had no trouble sticking to the plan I made because it included everything I wanted!
But enough about that!
I wanna talk about my GO-WITH-THE-FLOW-AMAZING-FAMILY!!
We are not rich or well-off by any stretch of the imagination. And right before this Boston trip, we got wiped out by unexpected car repairs. I talked to the kids about the trip being all about fun and togetherness
and not shopping an eating out, and rather than groaning, I got, “Oooh! Can we just go to Trader Joes and stock up and hang out in the room and by the pool and stuff!?” Hell yeah we can!!
So we get to Boston. (Well… we stay in Burlington– HOT TIP: Burlington hotels are MUCH, MUCH cheaper and it’s only a 15 minute drive to the Alewife T station and $7 to park for the whole day!) Karen at the front desk of the Hilton Garden Inn says, “I’m sorry. Priceline sent the reservation through for one king bed and the hotel is completely sold out (thanks a lot Taylor Swift), so I can’t even make a switch.” Great. So we go to the lobby to figure it out. Lonnie and I talk about seeing if we can get a room (that we can NOT afford) for the kid in a nearby hotel, as I overhear the kids talking and Sean is saying he could sleep in a chair or on the floor and Jessi could sleep across the bottom of the bed. Suddenly, Karen (aka my Hilton Hero) came over and pulls me aside to whisper that she made have found a solution, someone had checked out early and they had a 2 Queen room– but it wasn’t a done deal because she didn’t know if housekeeping would be able to turn over the room because it was so late, but she would do whatever she could to make it happen. And as the kids say… “Yo Yo Yo….Karen CAME THRUUUUUUUUUUUU” The only hitch was that we needed to disappear for a few hours to give everyone time to clean the room and make the changes…NO PROBLEM! I took this pic as we headed back to the car to kill time feeling all mushy and completely in love with my awesome bunch of drama-free travelers.
We had an AWESOME, CHEAP(ish– let’s be real) weekend! We even indulged Sean in his “dream” to go to a Tesla showroom and into all the fancy stores like Gucci and Louis Vuitton (He listens to waaaayyy too much rap music). The Tesla showroom in Boston actually turned out to be a fun highlight of the weekend. While Boston trips can EASILY break the bank, because of all the tourist attractions, cheap eats, people watching, and shops to browse, it can actually be a bargain!
Blissful staycation. Even taking into consideration ripping my big toenail half off and having to bow out of my 3k race tomorrow. Fortunately, as of today, it doesn’t really hurt anymore, and it’s oozing (ewwwww, I know) much, much less!
We’ve had a perfect balance of laziness and getting stuff done.
I got and planted some more plants.
Did some painting and decorating.
Cooked up a storm. Several, actually.
And this weekend, Jessi is coming to visit! I’m going to terrify myself with some dinos on a giant Imax screen. AND I’m going to terrify everyone else when I try my hand at homemade kimchi!
Here’s a link to one of the delicious recipes I made this week! (I didn’t shape it into a volcano. We were out of eggs. And I added some pork)
I have ALWAYS been a magnet for shenanigans, and even though the results are often a disaster, I LOVE IT!! I started my morning today by forgetting to put my cup under the Kuerig and coating my kitchen counter and floors with a delicious coating of Island Coconut coffee. And then burned myself wiping it up with a paper towel because somehow it didn’t occur to me that the coffee would still be hot.
After a successful second attempt at coffee, I sipped and thought about plans for my solo day of leisure. Full disclosure: I am a lazy ass bitch that can spend an entire day on the couch watching Youtube/Netflix/Hulu with no guilt whatsoever. But TODAY I decided to take my lazy ass to the lake with the pups.
Me to myself: “I’ll have a nice quiet day at the lake. I’ll take a swim if it’s warm enough, set up the hammock, and then read all afternoon. I am so outdoorsy. They Call me…. um…. shit— who is an outdoorsy person….. BEAR GYRLLS!!!” (HA See what I did there!? I crack myself up!)
Our adventure started with Piper spotting a couple new friends and yanking the leash– almost taking my middle finger with it. So that finger is black, purple, red, blue… and nice n’ fat now. And it hurts to type. Then I had to socialize with strangers because the dogs were having fun. I am 51% introvert. I was not thrilled.
Our new friends said their goodbyes so I finally got my swim. It WAS warm enough and it was lovely. A giant Bald Eagle was circling around the lake the whole time and if you know me, you know I love that shit!
Then I set up the hammock. Let’s not talk about how long it took me to get it set up the way I wanted it; aka with my ass NOT on the ground. You have to put those straps up on the tree REALLY HIGH!!! You also need TWO carabiners, not 1. WHO KNEW!!?? (Lonnie. Lonnie knew. Hence why I’ve never done it before.)
Then let’s not talk about me reading a HALF page of my book when suddenly Piper’s head comes over the edge of the hammock, dropping something into the hammock with me. I notice a stench while I contort myself to find what she dropped in there because it went under me somewhere, and it’s A DEAD FISH HEAD. Fun fact: It is impossible to quickly launch yourself out of parachute hammocks even when you feel like your life depends on it. It’s cool. I didn’t really feel like reading anyway……
It wasn’t the only fish head. The next half hour was me trying to make the dogs ignore the fish carnage, swimming with them again just to get them rinsed off because they rolled in it, and then deciding I’d had enough fun at the lake for one day.
Next time, those bitches are staying home!!
Who am I kidding?
It’s about to get weird up in here.
Thursday night my father visited me in a dream. Oddly enough, I have been waiting for this to happen since he died, and have been slightly (irrationally) annoyed that he hadn’t done it yet like my grandfather did the night he died (You can read about that here).
As we know, there were some “issues” between us when my dad died that caused me to sadness, anger, and confusion because our relationship had actually been great the past few years. I even answered the phone when he called every week or so and didn’t let it go to voicemail and then Facebook message him later on as I have been known to do…..
His refusal to let me visit when he was dying has run through my mind on a fairly regular basis. However, only over the past several weeks have I been able to lose the anger, and even the sadness, about it and realize those couple weeks are irrelevant to the past several YEARS.
Thursday night we stood talking in front of a fireplace (in a house/apt I’ve never been in or seen before) and he said something (I can’t remember what), causing me to say, “Dad, you know you died months ago, right?” He paused, thinking for a minute, and said, “Well, I guess that makes sense.” Then I told him what happened between us at the end and he genuinely appeared to remember any of it and seemed disappointed in himself, saying something to the effect of, ‘wow… I wonder why I would do that?’
Those last couple weeks, he was confused and disoriented most of the time, often unable to answer simple questions or recognize people he knew. So it would make sense if he didn’t remember events that took place during that period of time.
The rest of our visit was just. so. normal. We chatted like always and he was just my Dad.
The only thing nagging at me is when I said, “So… Do you like this new place?” he said, “Not particularly.” He did move right before he went into the hospital, and he wasn’t happy about it, so I hope that’s where my brain got that footage.
Yes, my brain. Because while I felt the realness of him there and the difference between that experience and my other nightly dreams. I also realize our minds are incredibly powerful and my dream could have been ‘just a dream.’
Frankly, It doesn’t matter which it was.
I’ve been using the “Lose it!” app for 6 days and as of this morning, I am back to myfitnesspal*. The Lose It (LI) app is SO CUTE! I LOVE the interface and it seems a little easier to add foods because there aren’t so many choices like in myfitnesspal (MFP) (For example, when you type ‘chicken thighs’ into MFP, you get about 456,402 options with calories ranging from 7 to 7294 :::a SMALL exaggeration:::). BUT….
- I got VERY sick of the ‘This is a premium feature so you should give us money if you want to do that!’ messages. For things even like adding food to the following day– which they call “Meal Planning,” which is a “premium feature.”
- Lose it! claimed to sync with Google fitness (or whatever its called–should just be ‘big brother is watching everything you do’), but it didn’t.
- Because I’ve used MFP for so many years, it knows me. Which is an unfair advantage, but still an advantage because all my favorite foods and exercises are already there.
- I miss my friends!! I do well with knowing others can see what I am doing and also just seeing that people I know are using the app too keeps me motivated. Basically, everyone has tried myfitnesspal at some point, so even when their accounts are currently not in use, it still shows a buncha peeps on my list that could be watching. And I like that.
myfitnesspal wins because you get way more for way less aka FREE!
*Note: myfitnesspal is lowercase intentionally (see photo 😉 )