Summer’s End

August 31, 2008

It’s been a while since I paid much attention to my garden.  The chard is prolific, the lettuce is history, and the broccoli….well, the broccoli has beautiful lush leaves and not much else.

The majority of my heirloom tomato plants withered and died.  And the one promising-sized tomato was carried off by a band of squirrels. So I’m left with my scattered cherry tomato forest which somehow manages to produce enough to eat a handful every day.   The last day of summer and it’s a day of mowing, weeding, and cleaning.


Danger Girl

August 28, 2008

My friend calls her  two-year old daughter “danger girl” because of the way she’s drawn to sharp implements, steep stairs, and fire. It turns out that my little Daisy  also has a thing for danger. She’s fascinated by men on Harleys, loose pitbulls, groups of wandering teenage boys, and dark alleys. It’s precisely at the moment when I most want her to heed my command that she stubbornly sits down on her cute little ass and pulls her version of non-violent resistance.  Luckily, a cookie will usually turn her head and I can cajole her into continuing on our walk.  But damn, puppy school can’t start soon enough for me!

On Routine

August 26, 2008

They say that getting a puppy is good practice for having kids.  I can see the similarities: working on potty, creating and maintaining some kind of reliable schedule, taking morning naps, making time for play, etc. My four-legged baby and I are finally settling into a groove and she’s even learning to heel on that miracle harness. And, unlike a kid, I can tempt her with a peanut butter-filled Kong and lure her into her crate while I go to work for 4 hours at a time. She may not like it, but she’s got to get used to it.

The trick is not to try and do too many things at once. Dogs live in the here-and-now and that’s got to be one of the best things about them in the world. By working with Daisy and letting her explore her boundaries and learn her limitations, she’s teaching me patience and presence. I think. I hope.

And I even got an estimate (finally) on the bathroom and am hoping to get into the handyman’s schedule for early October. Here’s to persistence and patience in all things.

A Dog’s World

August 23, 2008

I’ve walked the streets of my neighborhood for over a year, but now I’m seeing them in a new way through the eyes–or nose–of a dog. And sure, I’d met some folks before I got Daisy, but since I got her we’ve been introduced into a whole new world. She’s famous!  Everyone wants to know what she did to her leg (“Did he have ACL surgery?” “What happened to his leg?!”) and everyone wants to stop and pet her. Which is great.  She’s adapted to the big splint and has even figured out a way to stand on it for extra height (which is a bit of a problem since we’re working on her “sit.”) The other day on Main Street an elderly woman called out from her upstairs window “Hello Daisy!”  I’m telling you, it’s a dog’s life.

And everything about the house has taken a back burner. Today we’ll mow the lawn and do some yardwork. I’ve got a new Nyla bone for Daisy to try and she’s good on her 15 foot cable.  Momma’s learning. Now, if I could actually get some work done, we’d be set…

A Return to the Garden

August 16, 2008

My once thriving garden has been a wee bit neglected as of late. So Daisy and I headed in to weed, poke around, pick what we could, and dig up some stubborn old roots. We’ve got a little digger on our hands. Should come in real handy next spring when I’m getting ready to prepare the ground.

Sorry to be such an obsessed new doggy momma, but I can’t seem to help myself!

Learning to stretch

August 16, 2008

Is it me or does it feel like just when you’ve got your groove figured out, just when you’re in some kind of organic flow with life’s energy, you get thrown a cuve ball?

Pretty much everything around here came to a halt this week as Daisy and I learn how to manage her broken toe and bandaged metal splint. They sent her home from the vet’s on Thursday after a day of anasthesia and morphine. In the morning she hopped in on her three good legs, tail wagging, her favorite toy “Squeak” proudly in her mouth. She happily followed the vet tech in and didn’t even glance back.

When I picked her up later that afternoon, she was drooling, goopy-eyed, disoriented, and afraid of her bandaged hind leg. To make matters worse, they’d put on one of those ridiculous plastic elizabethan collers around her neck. it was the size of a large lampshade and kept getting caught on the ground. It was painful to watch.

Fast-forward 24 hours: Momma removed that f-ing lampshade, taught Daisy not to even think about licking her leg (I put a fuzzy fleece sock over the whole thing), the drugs are out of her system, and my girl’s back in the business of her usual sweet lovin’ self. We’re even learning how to heel using the gentle leader harness sysetm. I’d say we’re making great progress on all fronts. Yesterday I took her to school with me and she did beautifully. I even managed to crate her for an hour and go for a run.

It took me a number of years to learn how to live alone , but by now I’m fully comfortable and happy in my own routine. And then along came Daisy.  My challenge now is learning how to make room for others and my sweet girl’s already teaching me how one hobbled step at a time.

Two of Us

August 13, 2008

So being the new mom I am, I brought Daisy to a playgroup last night. There were five variations of black labs and one ass-kicking porgie.  They romped and postured and played and drank water and chased balls and did all their doggy things. In the final five minute, Daisy did something to her hind leg so we’re on the way to the vet this afternoon.  But what’s a playgroup without an injury, right?