An Obnoxiously Perfect Weekend

Not to sound like one of those annoying “life is great, everything is perfect, I fart rainbows” bloggers… but this weekend was pretty great.  We didn’t do anything special at all, but I just had this really content feeling all weekend.

When I got home Friday after my track workout, D wanted to go grab something to eat, so me and the dogs rode with him.  It was a really pleasant evening, so we stopped by the park to walk the dogs for a bit.  Usually when I’m walking the dogs, it’s at a brisk pace with me keeping them on task, but Friday we just made one slow, leisurely lap around the 0.75-mile loop, enjoying the beautiful weather and letting the dogs stop every few feet to sniff.  It just set the pace for a relaxing weekend.

Saturday morning, started off earlier than I’d have liked thanks to three STAAAARVING animals.  But if they hadn’t got me out of bed, I’d have missed this.

Besides, once all the furry bellies were full, I ended up falling back asleep on the couch anyway.  D went to the shop, so it was just me and the critters the rest of the day.  I was kind of in domestic mode, and we got lots done around the house.  C.C. even helped me fold and put away towels.

I’ll just make sure this stack doesn’t fall over, m’kay?

I texted my friend Suzan (the one I trade out dog-sitting with) to see if she wanted to take our dogs to the water since this may be our last weekend warm enough to do it, but she was stuck teaching a Common Core workshop (I can’t think of a worse way to spend a Saturday! haha) and couldn’t go.  So me and my two went to the state park at the lake not far from here, but that was pretty much a bust.  The water where they could have waded into the lake was sooo nasty and stinky.  There’s no way they were getting in that mess, so we just walked around the lake and enjoyed the day again.

Bella, my little co-pilot

And on our way home, we saw this sign!  I only caught a glimpse of it when I passed it the first time, so I had to turn around and go back to make sure I read it right.  We’re getting a brewery!!!!

Perrylodgic Brewing Co will be opening in November!

During my conversation with Suzan earlier in the day, she mentioned that she had almost called me to see if I could keep her dog that night because after she got out of her workshop she was only going to be home long enough to let Gnash out before she had to go to another event that evening and felt bad for leaving him so much that day.  I told her that we had no plans and to please bring him over.  He’s such a good boy, and he and my dogs are wonderful together.  They play and wrestle until they just crash.

After they’d worn each other out and settled down, me and D went out to dinner and had a nice night together–something we’ve had far too few of lately.

Sunday I slept till almost 8(!!!), which means it was already full sun and warm, so I decided to wait until the evening to do my long run.  That domestic mode I was in carried right on over into Sunday, so most of the day was spent doing house things including lots of time in the kitchen.  I was already tired when I started running at 5, so I didn’t expect much, but it turned out to be a great seven miles!

And to top it off, I found out it’s National Beer Day!  Who am I to refuse to celebrate that?!  What a perfect way to end a perfect weekend!!

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These Things Make Me Happy

The fabulous Kate at So Cal Runner Gal recently did a post, and I absolutely loved it, so I’m stealing it!  Her post was inspired by this question that she saw on Facebook:

My list right now would be…
  • The way my hair feels, looks, and smells right after I leave the salon
  • Cool nights and sleeping with the windows open
  • Snoring dogs
  • Smiling dogs
  • Seeing muscles beginning to develop where there used to be none
  • Falling asleep to the sound of a cat purring beside my head
  • New outfits
  • Vacation days and sleeping in–just because
  • Planting flowers

  • The year’s first blooms on Lucy’s rose bush.  I planted it at her grave in our yard the day after we buried her almost 5 years ago.  The new blooms remind me that she lives on.

"Hello? Can everybody hear me?" *tap tap tap* "Is this thing on?"

I have clicked the “Create new post” button at least a dozen times over the past couple of weeks and then just sat there with my my fingers on the keyboard not knowing where to begin.  How does one pick up where she left off when it’s been almost a year?!  (Just how in the HELL has it been almost a year anyway?!?!)  I have no good reason for my absence, really.  When I’ve taken a hiatus before, it was because things were full of suck and I just didn’t care to talk about it, but that wasn’t the case this time!  2013 didn’t suck at all!  It didn’t involve much running, and I spent way more time working than I would have liked, and sure it had it’s sucky moments, but overall it didn’t suck!

Allow me to share some highlights…

  • We split a week between Destin, FL (my favorite beach spot within a reasonable driving distance) and New Orleans where we celebrated our 6th anniversary in May.
We usually go to Destin in the late summer, but  from now on we’ll be going early in the year!  We were there the second week of May and it was GLORIOUS.

Anniversary dinner at Cafe Giovanni

We even had the opportunity to volunteer at Villalobos while in New Orleans!
D with one of the adoptables at Villalobos.

The famous Cafe Du Monde.  Who knew “beignet” was just a fancy word for “funnel cake”?

Jazzin’ it up.
  • We saw Kevin Nealon at Zanies in Nashville… HILARIOUS!  (But now I’m pissed because I know I took pictures that night and now I can’t find them!)
  • D and I both took up a new hobby.
  • I became more involved in rescue by volunteering locally and doing some volunteer driving on transports.  

I cry every time I see this picture. I’d like to cut a body part off of whoever cut her ears like that.

  • I started a new program here in town inspired by Abbi’s Miles & Mutts!  We take local shelter dogs to the park for exercise and socialization and to hopefully meet potential adopters.
Chops – ADOPTED!

D with Einstein – available for adoption

Me with Chops again

Cola – available for adoption.  She’s my pick of the pack right now.  I started this program last April, and she was already in the shelter then… who knows how long before that.  She’s been overlooked so many times… the “large black dog” syndrome.  She is such a fantastic dog and excellent running partner.  She sat a distance record for herself this weekend at a local 5-mile race!  I’m getting her out and networking her like crazy trying to get her out of that shelter!  If you’re looking for the perfect young, affectionate, high-energy black lab girl, please contact me!
  • Bella had her second surgery on her knee.  This was definitely not one for the “doesn’t suck” category, but it was a major event of 2013.  Financially anyway.  She reinjured it only a few months after her ACL repair and had to have meniscal repair too!  We were referred to an orthopedic specialist at UT Knoxville Veterinary Hospital for this one, and they did a wonderful job getting her back up and running.
  • Lots of fun times with the furry kids. 
Bella knows no stranger.  If you are at the dog park and you have a ball, she is your friend.

The old girl, C.C., enjoying some sunshine.

Bella’s first hotel stay the night before her appointment with the orthopedist in Knoxville.

Summertime fun.

Harley never got in the pool.  He was more interested in the water hose.  He loooooves getting sprayed.

Redneck baby gate.  This is how you allow your dog to get some sunshine after surgery when stairs are still off limits.

Nothing like a pittie smile.

More dog park fun.

Supporting a neighboring county’s humane society at their Barktoberfest.

Harley’s new friend, Gnash.  Bella and Harley have a new pupsitter, and Gnash is her dog.  Instant buds.

Bella and Gnash.
  • Saw Hugh Laurie and the Copper Bottom Band in concert.  AMAZING musicianship!

  • Crossed a major item off my bucket list and went to a Cardinals World Series game!  Remember Game 3?  The one that ended in extra innings on an obstruction call?  The one they’re calling the most bizarre ending to a World Series game in history?  Yeah, WE WERE THERE!  It was a night I’ll remember forever.

So there you have it.  That’s my year in a nutshell.  I actually didn’t realize how fantastic it was until I started looking back through a year’s worth of memories in photos.  It may not be that exciting or interesting to some, but it’s my life, and I freaking love it.

A Plague on My House

If you count the four-legged members, which I do, there are five members of this household.  Of those five members, 60% of us are ailing in some way.  (Coincidentally, all the females.  Hmmmm…)

First, there’s me and my leg.

Second, there’s C.C.  Once a few months ago, she went through this stage where she was licking around her nipples a lot.  It only lasted a few days, so I chalked it up to allergies.  Well, a couple of weeks ago, she started licking her belly again but this time a lot worse.  She licked herself raw!

I took her to the vet on Monday and they gave her a shot of antibiotics and said if it didn’t get better to come back.  It was time for her blood work and overall well-kitty checkup anyway, so while they were doing her physical they noticed that she’s developed some pretty significant arthritis in her back hips and lower back.  I felt bad for not knowing that my poor kitty had been uncomfortable, but the vet assured me that cats are notorious for hiding pain.  She’s still pretty active and still able to jump on and off the furniture with no problem, but apparently she’s been uncomfortable doing so.  With only five days of the anti-inflammatories in her, I already see a difference in her posture and gait.  So we’re looking good on that front, but her belly hasn’t gotten any better, so we went back in for a follow-up this morning.  They just gave me a topical steroid spray to use and said to give if two weeks.

Bella also came along for the ride this morning because she’s been shaking her head a lot lately, and Harley has been licking her left ear.  Last time that happened, she had a yeast infection in her ear.  Besides that, she’s been kind of favoring her left back leg off and on for a couple of weeks.  Now with two bullies who like to wrestle… like ALL the TIME… strains are nothing new in our house.  But with this one hanging around for more than the usual couple of days, I wanted to have it seen about.  Turns out she does have another yeast infection in that ear.  When he checked out her leg, he noticed that her knee is pretty swollen, and she would wince when he would extend that leg.  So it’s ear drops and anti-inflammatories for her too!  And no strenuous exercise.  THAT’s gonna be fun… He said I can walk her, but no running.  That much, I can control.  But keeping these two yahoos from their wrestling matches, or from playing chase-and-tackle in the back yard, or from running full-speed up and down the deck stairs… that’s gonna be more of a challenge.  And on top of it all, he heard a heart murmur today that he’s never heard before.  He told me not to lose sleep over it because it was very mild, but he wants to listen to it again in 3 months and do chest x-rays and an echocardiogram if it’s worse.

Anyone got any tips on training an animal to do laundry or clean the house?  These critters gotta start pulling their weight around here!

Tuesday Tidbits

  • April and May have been positively crazy!  I’ve had to prioritize where my time went, and blogging/reading blogs was the first thing to go.  I logged in yesterday and saw that I had 366 unread items, so I’ve obviously missed a lot in your worlds!  Obviously there’s no way I’m catching up on that, so what’s a girl to do?  “Mark All As Read.”  Sorry if I missed any earth-shattering announcements!
  • Yesterday was my 5-year wedding anniversary.
  • We celebrated said anniversary by taking a cruise week before last.  (Post and pictures to follow soon!)
  • Cruises are not my cup of tea.  However, I have never eaten more delicious food than I ate that week.
  • For the second year in a row, I came back from vacation to bad news at work.  And this time, D did too.  It’s been an emotional week around here.
  • I didn’t get to run either the half marathon or the 5K that I was trying to decide between on 4/21.  I had to work.  I can’t bring myself to complain about that though.  My fill-in had a family emergency.  I’m sure he would have much rather been at work than planning his mother’s funeral.
  • I didn’t get to run the 10K last weekend either.  I’ve had the flu or some other equally unfun ailment since last Tuesday.  So has D.  It’s been an emotional AND snotty week around here.
  • For the last couple of days, my cat has been licking her nipples incessantly.  Poor little things are red and raw!  I see a trip to the vet in our very near future if whatever it is doesn’t clear up STAT.  Anyone else ever had anything like that happen with their feline?
  • I picked up my first CSA haul last Thursday night.  I’ve never seen so many greens in my life!  Turnip greens, mustard greens, kale, swiss chard, bok choy, a couple of lettuces, napa cabbage… And there were a couple of other things I had never seen.  I was introduced for the first time to kohlrabi and garlic scapes.  This will be an interesting summer in my kitchen!

Our Tiny Gym

Where membership is free and there’s no waiting for machines!

(If D gets in my way, I can just smack him.  That was frowned upon at my previous gym.)

This giant monstrosity is our new Bowflex Revolution.  Loving this!  I was always pretty self-conscious doing strength training at the gym.  I always felt like I was crashing some kind of frat party or something… damn bunch of pretty-boy muscle heads…

C.C. always “supervises” me.
I love that it stands up to take up less space.  Although that’s not really an issue for us right now, but it’s nice to know it’s an option.  And it DOES make vacuuming easier.  And it leaves plenty of floor space should I decide to take up pole dancing or karate.  Both viable options.
Bella and Harley suffer from a severe case of FOMO (fear of missing out).

The Bowflex came with this awesome accessory rack (thank goodness–like we need more crap stacked in the floor).  And there in the corner is my new pride and joy–a Sunny Health & Fitness indoor cycle.  I could tell you all about it, but there’s no sense reinventing the wheel.  Janae just bought the same one and has already posted a full and very accurate review here.  Most definitely worth the money!

After laying down all that cash, I thought our gym was complete, but DUDE, we have GOT to get a TV for that room.  Music makes the time in the saddle tolerable, but the view kind of sucks.

And, who knows… if I happen to come across a good deal on a Craigslist treadmill…

Three Things Thursday – Animal Edition

1.  Harley is having a lot of problems with his tail post-op.  I have had to take him back to the vet a couple of times.  Once just because I thought he had pulled a stitch out.  (He hadn’t.)  And yesterday because he really started just acting like he didn’t feel good.  He was being really pissy with Bella, and I noticed him really guarding his tail.  He wouldn’t wag it or anything.  He just kept it curled up next to his body.  When I made him let me look at it, it was red and swollen.  Not just around the wound either.  From the incision all the way to the tip of his tail.  He was running a fever at the vet’s office, so they gave me another week’s worth of a stronger antibiotic and some pain pills.  We go back tomorrow for a recheck and for suture removal.  He doesn’t seem any better to me today.  It hurts my heart to know that he is hurting.  They did call me back today with the lab results.  The path report showed that it was a histiocytoma.  Completely benign.  Thank God for that.
2.  It is driving Bella crazy that Harley won’t play with her.  She, in turn, is driving us crazy.  It’s cold and snowy and crappy out, so our outside time is limited.  She has a lot of energy to burn off and she’s doing it by getting into EVERYTHING.  She has even found a new place to sleep–in my dining room table.
3.  C.C. has woke me up at approximately 4:00 the past three mornings.  Apparently something has happened during the night that she just couldn’t wait to tell me about because she comes into the bedroom tellin’ it all.  “Meow…. MEOW….MEEEEEEEEEOOOOOOOWWWWW!!!!!!”