Friday, February 16, 2007

Snippets (blog soup)

It's some kind of a record...

...for me, at least. It's been exactly a month since I posted about cleaning my really messy house, and I've managed to maintain it in a clutter-free condition the whole time since then. Who knows? I may catch on to this strange, picking-up-after-myself concept after all.

This photo was taken right after I'd cleaned the living room. If you saw the same room now, you'd see every flat surface coated with a layer of dust, and if you tried to eat off my floor, you'd get dog hair in your mouth, but there is still no clutter. I'll dust and vacuum tomorrow.

Still on my own...... the office. My boss, Mr. J, is still in the hospital recovering from heart surgery. He's doing well, heartwise, but has a couple of other issues that need to be resolved before they send him home.

Today is the eighth day in a row I've spent the majority of the workday by myself. A few clients have dropped in, and an attorney who's been an invaluable resource during Mr. J's absence has checked in several times daily to answer my questions. Mostly, though, it's been really quiet. Even an introvert like me gets lonely after a while.

Speaking of hearts...

...the writers of Grey's Anatomy rip open my chest every Thursday night and play my heartstrings with the all the deftness of an inbred Appalachian on the front porch with a banjo. I laugh and I cry. I hope and I fret. I can't wait for it to begin and I don't want it to end. They're good, those writers. I know they're manipulating me, but all I want is more of it.

A good thing about living in South Louisiana... that all the offices, banks, courthouses, etc., close for Mardi Gras. With President's Day on Monday and Mardi Gras on Tuesday, I'll have a four-day weekend. Tomorrow I'll dust and vacuum (as promised above) and do a little laundry. The rest of that four days is mine, mine, mine!

A bad thing about living in South Louisiana this weekend... Mardi Gras traffic. From Friday through Monday, eighty percent of the cars on the road will be headed southeast of here. Bumper to bumper, as fast as they can move, they'll head in a caravan to the Big Easy, where they're hoping to find their fair share of drink and debauchery. Parades will roll, liquor will flow, music will fill the air, and the ladies(?) will expose their breasts and scream, "Throw me somethin', Mister!" in exchange for strings of plastic beads tossed from floats and balconies. All that partying, just an hour away from here! I'd go, but there's this really good book I'm reading...

On Wednesday? All those cars will be headed in the other direction. A little more slowly. Trying not to hit any bumps. Or make any noise.

The first joke I ever heard about New Orleans:

Q. Do you know how to spot a tourist in New Orleans?

A. Yeah, sure, by the chalkmark around the body.

Quite a set for a neutered dog...

Earlier this evening I sat on the recliner end of the sofa. Kadi sat erect to the left of me, leaning against the back of the sofa and leaving about a six-inch margin of bare leather at the edge of the seat. Butch passed by, sniffed to survey the situation, jumped up onto the empty seat at the other end of the sofa, then immediately turned around and carefully cat-walked, one foot in front of the other, through the narrow space around Kadi, to squeeze in, lie down, and rest his head in my lap.

I've always thought it took a lot of guts for a blind dog to leap onto a sofa. Butch is a big dog; there isn't a lot of margin for error. I thought tonight's tippy-toeing, teetering on the edge, was beyond bold. I thought he was brave. Kadi thought he was annoying.

The girls

There's no story to go along with this photo of Lucy and Kadi. It makes me smile, though, and I thought you might like it, too.

If you don't smile right away, click the photo to enlarge it and look at Lucy's little mustache. (It reminds me of Mrs. P, our next-door neighbor in New York.)


  1. Butch is a wonder dog! Give him a hug from me.

    Love how Kadi's front paws are crossed! Is she...err...a "big girl"? and does your vet get on your case about it? I have to take Spot for his yearly checkup soon and the vet never fails to make me feel terrible about Spot's weight. "You're killing that dog", is the first thing he says when he comes into the exam room.

    Lucy's mustache reminded me of someone, and it came to me: David Niven.

    You must take photographs to prove you dusted and vacuumed.

  2. Velvet, How'd you do it??? My house looks worse than your BEFORE pic... I can never get ahead.

    I just love you stories of Butch. I've been amazed ever since I first read on Kim's site about his eye surgery. He is one awesome pup.

    Your girly girls are adorable. What sweeties!


  3. Janet, consider Butch hugged.

    Let's just say Kadi is at the far upper end of the normal range for an old female Lab. I personally think she's a little porky, but neither the new vet nor the old one has ever mentioned a word about her weight.

    David Niven? Exactly. You have a good eye.

    Ummm...the photo of my living room was taken AFTER it had been dusted and vacuumed. That's how it should look after I do it again tomorrow. If you want to know what it looks like now, just think of it exactly like this--only grayer.;-)

  4. Holly, since you were the second person to think this was a BEFORE picture of my house, I've edited that paragraph to clarify that this is an AFTER photo. The standard to which I now aspire. (I still hate housework, though.)

    It makes me feel all warm and fuzzy to think about how all of us doglovers get mushy over each other's dogs as well as our own.

  5. But Velvet when I enlarge the last photo I can see dust all over the black book, Blessings.

  6. Oh, but I should have added your living room does look Marvelous!

  7. Velvet, after being in this motorhome for 4 months now, the picture of your living room is just SO inviting! Room - there's lots of room! I want to just wander in all that space - and then cuddle on the couch with the dogs while I read! ENJOY your LONG weed-end!

  8. I must have the only weight-obsessed vet in the Western world.

    I blame the dust on my monitor screen. Your living room looks almost scarily tidy. Throw a few dog toys on the floor before you take another picture-you're making the rest of us look bad!

  9. 4th Sister, the photo of the dogs was taken just a couple of days ago. That dust you see on the black book is all over everything right now. It's almost noon, and here I am at the computer, but I still have time to dust and vacuum before the day's over.

    Jackie, I'm sure that motorhome does feel confining after a while, but I still envy your opportunity to travel and explore and sleep in your own bed every night.

    Janet, can you feel Spot's ribs? I keep reading and seeing on TV that you should be able to feel a dog's ribs but not see them. If you can see them, the dog is too thin; if you can't feel them, the dog is too fat. I can feel Kadi's ribs--but I have to press painfully hard to feel my own.

    As for dog toys, Butch and Kadi aren't all that interested in them anymore. It's Winston and Lucy who scatter toys all over the house during the day, so Kim usually picks them all up before she goes home.

    And I like your choice of words: "scarily tidy." That's exactly how I felt about it in the beginning. It felt too sterile, and it took me almost two weeks to feel comfortable in it. I couldn't make myself do anything fun that might mess it up. I'm beginning to do messy "projects" again, but I try to quit while I still have enough energy to pick up and put away. It's embarrassing to be proud of one month of cleanliness, but I wish I could attend some kind of meeting and get a one-month chip or something.

  10. I can't believe they killed Meredith. There had better be a twist, Princess and I cried like she was our sister.

  11. 3rd Sister says get a good book and let the dust settle. I am glad you have your dogs to keep you company. Your own little family with you and your friends.

    Being at work by oneself, could have its benefits. I think I might like it, but doubt I would get anything done!

  12. I'm sure they'll resuscitate Meredith, she's the star, her name comes up first in the credits.

    I can feel Spot's ribs, but there's a layer of "padding" there. He gets about a half hour of good exercise every day and sometimes is stiff but he's fine the next morning. He is overweight, I know, but I have a hard time saying No when he begs.

    Spot likes his Fuzzy ball indoors and is still working on a pair of slippers he ruined as a puppy that I keep around, he grabs one and starts chewing on it when he's frustrated. He knows he's allowed to chew those and not my other shoes-it took a long time for him to learn that, though. He has a plastic box full of toys that he doesn't play with.

  13. Awww Lucy and Kadi are so sweet! I also had to smile at the way Kadi's paws are crossed. Life would seem so empty without our furry friends.

    I love your living room furniture.
    Your room is very pretty.

  14. Kat, I didn't cry for Meridith (she HAS to come back) but for McDreamy and all of the others. On a happy note, it was good to see Denny again.

    3rd Sister, I took your advice and let the dust settle for one more day. I finally found a good book about using Adobe Photoshop Elements, so I spent half the day learning how to organize my digital photos. Can't wait to get to the part that shows me how to use the editing tools to touch up scratches, etc., in the old photos I've scanned.

    Janet, Kadi could probably give Spot begging lessons. She came up to me the other day, put her knees and chin on my knee and looked up at me with the saddest eyes I've ever seen. She was shivering almost violently, which really worried me. I put my arms around her and said, "Kadi, what's the matter, Sweetheart, are you okay?" Still she shivered. I said, "Kadi, what's wrong? Tell me what you need." The shivering stopped immediately, she ran and stood with her tail wagging in front of the cabinet where we keep the treats. One rawhide chew later, she was completely cured.

    Cindi, you're right about the furbabies; they're such good company.

    As for my living room, I was going for a woodsy feeling with the moss green and rusty browns, and it was challenging to try to keep it from being too masculine. The best part was that once I figured out what kind of furniture I wanted, I waited and watched for sales. Eventually, I got every single piece of furniture in my living room, dining room and bedroom at huge discounts. Patience is not a virtue with which I'm well acquainted, but it paid off this time.

  15. today was a day for deep cleaning. I did 6 loads of laundry. That's not the productive part of my day, the productive part was putting it all up. Tomorrow is dusting and sweeper day. If someone asked me what colour my dresser is I'd have to say, it's brown dusty colour. What colour is your night stand? Well, it's also a brown dusty colour. They're a set. If there was anymore dust in this house I could call this my own desert.

    I've all but given up on the furbabies hair everywhere. I try not to let it build up but I'm not quite managing that. Sometimes my brown rug looks black..well, I'm not that bad.

    Your home is beautiful.

  16. It always gives me a smile when you tell stories about your dogs, or when you post photos of them.

    Nice clean house too -- well done.

  17. your dogs look so darned sweet! and your living room is beautiful imo.

    Kadi just looks awesome to us, i bet she would let us pet her all night long

    hugs to you and them!


  18. Spot hasn't gotten to the level of faking illness in order to get a treat, but he does a pretty darn good imitation of a starving waif, like Dondi, all big sorrowful eyes and drool. He uses the chin-on-lap thing as a coup de grace. If he's laying down at the time, he will thump his front paw on the floor and if I ignore him he'll keep hitting the floor and then start to bark, demanding a treat. I'm surprised he hasn't learned to open the treats cabinet and help himself. Maybe it's more fun to make me do it.

  19. Duly Inspired, I'm glad the pups made you smile. Thinking about you smiling makes me smile.

    Keepers, Kadi IS sweet--most of the time. She'd let you pet her as long as you wanted to, and she'd be sweet as long as you were petting her. But if you stopped long enough to pet one of the other dogs, you'd see Kadi's not-very-attractive, sulky side.

    Janet, do you ever wonder if they think our sole purpose in life is to please them? Because sometimes *I* think that.


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