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Finnigan Strikes Again & Again

Finn, my whippet puppy, is doing it again.  He’s driving me mad, batty, coo-coo.  I’m supposed to be training for a half marathon but instead, I’m chasing after this goof ball:

slywhippet

He’s a 10 month old whippet, which I’m convinced is old enough to know better…right??  We (the humans) recently took a big leap of faith and started leaving Finn home alone, uncrated, when we left the house.  At first, we left him alone for 20 minutes or so and everything was fine when we returned.  Then we had to leave him for 45 minutes, then an hour, then 4 hours.  Yes, you’re right.  Four hours was a little risky on our part…especially knowing he gets bored so easily.

Here’s what tickles Finn’s fancy in the absence of human supervision:

grass Removing all of the dried moss from the potted plants and then leaving the moss on the kitchen floor.  What’s so fun about that?

mantle Finn knows that we keep all of our winter shoes in the basement closet.  He also knows that we are a forgetful bunch of humans and never close the closet door.  He finds great pleasure in carrying our shoes up to the living room where he chews and chews and chews on them.  When we get home and find all of our shoes (and boots, and hats, and slippers) around the house, we just throw everything on top of the mantle because we know if we put it away in the closet, we’ll forget to close the closet door and we’re back to square one.

mismatchedshoes Where the hell are my missing flip flops, Finn????  I can NOT continue walking around like this!

When I come across one of Finn’s messes, I think to myself, “When I find you, Finn, I’m gonna…” then I find this:

adorablewhippet …An adorable whippet who drives me crazy and melts my heart all at once.  I forget exactly what it was I was going to do to him and instead I pour a glass of wine, relax with my trouble maker and make a mental note to close the closet door.

Vodka Allergy and Other Really Messed Up Things

This weekend was going to be really great.  The only things on the agenda were rest, relaxation and a manicure with my mother-in-law.  Instead I discovered an allergy to vodka, I got a manicure that was ruined within 4 hours and of course, there’s the poop eating puppy.  Tragic, right?

My husband and I have a little tradition which is to partake in Friday night           “mini-tinis” which is basically a martini in a tiny martini glass. 

For some reason, we like drinking the smaller sized beverage. minitini

Maybe it’s because if we want refills (which you know we will), we have to take turns getting up and going to the freezer, (which you KNOW burns enough calories to cancel out all of the mini-tinis we consume for the night, and probably the chips and popcorn too). Plus, those big ol’ martini glasses have a spill-factor that becomes quite frustrating as the night goes on.

Anyway, we went out on a limb and purchased a huge bottle of Kirkland vodka from Costco.  We heard great reviews about it so we deviated from our normal brand (whatever’s on sale) and bought an enormous bottle from Costco.  So, Friday night vodka consumption takes place and later in the evening, I’m a sneezing, sniffling, nose-blowing mess.  I just know it’s the vodka…it has happened before with a different brand.  I wonder what’s in it that I’m allergic to?  Needless to say, this is a big loss for me but it looks like the hubby has a jumbo bottle of vodka all to himself.

Then Saturday my lovely mother-in-law treated me to a wonderful manicure at the amazing Davenport Hotel which is the fanciest of fancy places in my town.  We sipped on our champagne, enjoyed a relaxing manicure, did some shopping and had an all around fabulous day.  Until I started to make a pear cobbler.

Once at home, I decided to make a pear cobbler because, well, it sounded like a healthy dessert (if you don’t count the cup of sugar and cube of butter).  As I’m prepping the pears, I notice three of my nails are completely absent of nail polish.  Not chipped.  Not cracked.  The nail polish has vanished!  My first thought is, “Crap, the nail polish is somewhere in the bowl of pears!”  I went through the entire bowl of pears and did not find any nail polish.  I decided to retrace my steps and I found the chunks of nail polish in the sink where I was washing the pears.  The polish came clean off the nails…in one piece.  I was so mad because it was not a cheap mani.  I called the hotel’s spa and they scheduled a do-over for which I am very grateful.

For now, my nails look like this: badmani

This weekend’s other messed up thing had to do with my whippet puppy, Finn.  Finn is going through his “teething” stage which is ridiculous.  We have a bag full of toys and he chooses to chew on my work shoes or my really nice slippers.  Actually, that is not so terrible considering what I found him chewing on in the basement.

While I’m in the kitchen cursing at my vanishing nail polish, I realize I have not seen or heard Finn for a while.   This is NEVER a good sign.  I go down to the basement and find him happily chewing on something.  I thought he was going to town on one of my son’s  Lincoln Logs but nooooooo, it was a log of a different kind.  He is chewing on a hard piece of dog $h!t.  This is gross on so many levels.  First, he was chewing on a piece of poo.  Second, where did that poo come from?  And if it was hard, how long has it been laying around?  Why did we fail to discover it sooner?  Was it mixed up in the box of Lincoln Logs?  Has my child been playing with poo?  All these thoughts run through my head (not to mention this thought:  “Mental note to self –  do not let Finn lick your face.”).  I am sickened and have to chase after Finn to get the prized piece of poo out of his mouth.  That is sick Finn.  Just sick.  So sick, I will not include a picture.  You’re welcome.

Right now, it’s a quiet Sunday morning and I’m sipping my coffee, just relaxing.  The poo situation is resolved.  My messed up manicure will be remedied next week and the vodka…well, I guess I will just stick to wine.  But I REFUSE to drink it out of a mini wine glass.  Heck no.  Bring on the jumbo glass.

If Zombies Invaded Puppy School

I don’t talk about this much because I worry people might think I’m immature or a weirdo or something.  Deep breath.  Okay, here it goes…At the tender age of 45 I am finding myself totally into all things zombie.  No…I’m not into them like that.  I’m not a perv.  I’m into them the way normal people are into them:

Anyway, while attending one of our puppy school sessions, I was looking around at all the super adorable pups (except for that yippy yappy Chihuahua) and I thought, “What if zombies invaded the puppy school and turned all the puppies into zombies?”  Now let’s be real, I know people think about these things, I’m the only one brave enough to admit it.

So here’s how I think a puppy school zombie invasion would go down:

Puppies BEFORE zombie invasion:

cutehuskynormalgoldiewhippetpuppynormal

SITKA                             GOLDIE                                    FINN

Puppies AFTER zombie invasion:

sitkazombiepupgoldiezombie2zombiepupfinn

Yes, this is how I spent my free time tonight…turning puppies into zombies.

It’s almost Halloween folks so everyone go get your zombie on!!

Post Half Marathon Bonehead Moments

Since completing my first half marathon last week, it seems that some brain cells were damaged in the process.  Usually I would blame my “bonehead moments” on my puppy but this time I will blame it on all the extra brain activity that took place during the half marathon.  Sure, running may not seem like it requires a whole lot of thinking but believe me, a whole lot of thinking actually takes place.  It requires so much focus, in fact, that it reduces your post-race focus capacity.  I’m not sure how long this will last but I’m hoping it’s short lived.  Take a look at the bonehead moments I’ve had since finishing the half marathon (most recent bonehead moment just a couple of hours ago):

1.  FAILED TO USE CAUTION WHEN PUTTING ARM WARMERS ON.    I bought some new Brooks arm warmers which are great for running in the chilly fall temperatures.  However, when I put them on, I had to tug on the top of the arm warmer to get it high enough up my arm.  As I was tugging with all my might, my fingers slipped and I hit myself in the mouth.  Ouch. When I was done swearing and wiping the blood from my lip, I tried again.  I hit myself again.  Damn it.  The next time I tried, I turned my head toward the opposite arm and was able to successfully put the oh so dangerous arm warmers on my arms.  My advice – when putting arm warmers on, don’t look down to see what your hand is doing.  Look the other way just in case your fingers slip.

2.  NEGLECTED TO OPEN GARAGE DOOR BEFORE BACKING CAR OUT.   Yeah, I said it.  Make sure your garage door is ALL the way open BEFORE backing your car out.  As I was backing out of the garage, I heard a terrible crashing sound.  My first thought was, “Dear Lord, please tell me that wasn’t one of those little dudes from the neighborhood.  I told them about that blind spot.”  I didn’t hear any screams so my second thought was that I ran into the trashcan.  Neither had happened.  When I got out of my car to assess the situation, I saw the garage door sitting on top of the roof of my car.  Crap.  That’s not good.  Luckily, I did not break the garage door and the roof of my car was scratched but intact.  Now that I think about it, I should have taken a picture…it would have been a nice visual for this imageless blog entry.

3. FORGETTING TO PAY ATTENTION TO MEAT PACKAGING.  You know how when you buy meat at the grocery store the butchers put it in those Styrofoam trays  then Saran Wrap the crap out of it?  Well, when you buy hamburger meat for, let’s say, chili, don’t just cut open the Saran Wrap and dump the contents of the meat in your pot and start cooking.  Did you know they put a little absorbent plastic-y pad under the meat so the blood doesn’t slosh around inside the package (gag)?  Yeah, that little sponge-like item does NOT go in your pot of chili.  It will not enhance the flavor!  I unknowingly threw that little sucker into the pot of chili but luckily, was able to retrieve it before the plastic melted.

4.  FORGETTING PIN (number) AT THE GROCERY STORE.  I’ve had my PIN for how long?  There are how many digits to commit to memory?  I use it how many times a week?  That’s supreme boneheadedness right there….forgetting my PIN in the checkout line at the grocery store.  So embarrassing.  I have never forgotten my PIN before.  Why now?

5.  FAILING TO WALK GRACEFULLY ON WET, SLIPPERY SURFACES.  So a couple of hours ago I took a nice leisurely spill on the wet steps while leaving work.  My boot heel slipped under my foot, my ankle rolled, I fell on the ground, I picked my sorry ass up off the ground (mainly because I knew I could be seen on the security camera), I hobbled back inside and called out for a little help.  It was pathetic and it was painful and it made me tear up a little.  I cried not only because it hurt but because I didn’t see myself running anytime real soon (and I just bought myself some new running shoes yesterday, too Sad smile).

There you have it…the potential dangers of thinking too hard when running a half marathon.  Take heed fellow runners.  While running, make sure you don’t use up all of your brain juice…leave some so you don’t experience post-race focus capacity issues.

Has anyone else experienced post-race focus capacity issues………or is it just me?!  Smile

Puppy Love – The Honeymoon is so over

I feel a little bad about writing this but the whippet puppy honeymoon is O-V-E-R!  I know, that probably makes me a rotten person to be tired of all the puppy crap so soon (figuratively and literally).  I wrote about being THAT lady…the one who unconditionally loves her perfect little pup…and I do love my pup.  I just no longer think he’s perfect.  He’s a puppy punk sometimes.

The little dude has no respect for the weekend sleep in tradition.   He’s up at the crack-o-dawn ready to go as if it were a Monday or Thursday.  Seriously, why doesn’t he understand that Saturdays and Sundays are the only two days we can chill a little in the morning?  Is it asking too much to just sleep a little longer?

And why is it that house training was great the first week (so much, in fact,  I thought he was borderline genius) and since we have been “working” with him, he has more accidents in the house?   I don’t think they’re accidents at all.  I know he knows how to tell us he has to go…He does it 95% of the time.  That other 5% of the time he’s thinking, “Screw you guys, I’m going wherever I want to go.  That’s what puppies do, sucka.”  That’s disgusting.  Bad puppy.

And why does he have to chew on used tissue?  We have allergies in this household so we are always using tissue.  We have tissue in every room of the house.  Why does he have to find it, pull it out of the trash and chew on it?  That’s gross.  Bad puppy.

And then there is the whole Ninja Puppy thing.  How can he disappear so fast?  One second I see him and know the situation is under control then the next second, Poof! He’s gone…vanished…out of sight.  We had to barricade 4 different areas of our house to minimize the places he can sneak off to and do Lord knows what.  I don’t understand how, while under our strict supervision, he ninjas his way over to the wrong side of the barricade then looks at us like he pulled off a trick that would leave David Copperfield in awe.   It’s annoying.  Bad puppy.

To help with our puppy woes, we are going to puppy school.  It’s really for us humans because the instructors seem to think puppies are perfect (ha!) and humans are the ones who need training.  During class last week, we (the human family members) were paying close attention to the instructor, while Mr. Finn, on the other hand,  was taking a ‘cat’ nap during class.  Very rude.  Bad puppy.

It might seem like I don’t like my puppy but I really, really do.  He’s still adorable.  I even made him a little puppy snuggie to keep him warm during the chillier fall days.  The snuggie won’t win any fashion awards but it could win an award for the easiest darn dog garment to make EVER.  You need fleece, scissors, measuring tape, marker, Velcro square sticky back thingies, and a sewing machine.  It’s supposed to be a whippet fleece coat no-sew pattern but I opted to sew the area by the neck and add Velcro to the belly straps instead of tying it.  So there were some adjustments I made to the pattern.

Start off with some cozy fleece…

cozy fleeceThen end up with this rockin’ garment:

whippet coat  whippet fleece coat

I just measured Finn (along back and around chest), sketched out my version of the pattern on the fleece with a marker, cut it out, sewed the neck area, stuck on some Velcro square sticky back thingies on the ends of the belly straps and it was done in less than 30 minutes.

See, I really do love my puppy.  He is teaching me patience, he is keeping me on my toes and he is keeping my mind distracted so that I don’t freak out about my upcoming half marathon.  That’s awesome.  Good puppy.

Training & treadmills & puppies, oh my!

Whew!  It’s been a quite a week of training and treadmills and puppies.  I might be exaggerating on the training and treadmill parts but the puppy part…that’s been crazy, man.

TRAINING

My half marathon is coming up and my training time is going down.  I’m pretty sure that’s not how the training books describe the training plan at this juncture.  On Labor Day I did an 11 mile run (miracle in my book) and I pretty much thought I was a rock star.  But then I had an epic allergy situation take place for the next few days and I was out of commission.  By Thursday, I was off my game.  I ran out of steam.  In less that a week I felt like I broke the awesome little running habit I formed.  So, what do I do when I need a  little kick in the butt?   I spend some quality time on Pinterest and look at the Health and Fitness page and ooh and ahh at the beautifully fit bodies, the really cool exercise routines and I promise myself that one day I will make that spinach-banana-chia pet-whatever smoothie.  Yum.

TREADMILLS

I got over my “I don’t want to run anymore” mood when I looked at a calendar and counted only 3 more weekends before the half (well, that and the Pinterest fix).  That was a nice tasty dose of reality…just as tasty as that chia pet smoothie, I bet.  Anyway, I tried running outside but the air quality was very poor due to fires in Central WA.   I busted out my trusty inhaler, ditched the outdoor runs and instead did some running on the treadmill.  I even did an 8 mile run.  EIGHT MILES on a treadmill!  Not a lot of interesting scenery but I felt great and was proud that I accomplished that goal.  I made fantastic use of my treadmill time and watched an episode of Rookie Blue, listened a bit to my audio book (The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn) and I came up with a genius idea for treadmill manufacturers.

Instead of a calorie counting feature, there should be a feature that counts how many adult beverages you just earned.  Let me break it down:  Let’s say a glass of white wine is 130 calories.  As you’re running on the treadmill, burning up those calories, an image of a wine glass starts to appear.  As you burn more calories, more of the wine glass image is revealed.  Once you burn 130 calories, your treadmill lights up the entire wine glass image. BAM!  You just earned yourself a guilt free glass of wine. When you burn 260 calories, two wine glasses light up.  Guess who gets two glasses of wine tonight??  And it doesn’t stop at wine.  You can program it for martinis, margaritas, cosmos, whatever floats your boat.  Anyway, I thought it was an amazing idea…Award winning stuff.

PUPPIES

So when I’m not coming up with ways to revolutionize the world of treadmilling (pretty sure that’s not a real word), I am busy with being a puppy mama which leads me to the Whippet Pupdate:  Finn, the whippet puppy, is ridiculous.  We cannot take our eyes off of him for two seconds.  I’m not exaggerating.  We can take our eyes off of him for one second but not two.  He’s crazy fast and just disappears in a flash.  It’s like his super power…We don’t even know how he does it.  One second he’s at your feet, the next second he has vanished into thin air.  Here’s a typical conversation at our house:

Me:  Who’s got Finn?

Husband:  I thought you had him?

Me:  I thought YOU had him!  Garrett!!!  Do you have Finn?

Garrett: What?

Me:  Do you have Finn?

Garrett:  No.  I thought YOU had him.

Me:  Crap.  Where’s Finn??  We gotta find Finn.

This conversation takes place 4 or 5 times a night.  It reminds me of “The Walking Dead” when the adults always lose Karl.  Karl is probably around 9 years old roaming around unsupervised in a land full of ravenous zombies.  He’s the one and only child on the show that the grown ups must keep an eye on but Karl ALWAYS manages to disappear. Seriously grown ups, how can you lose Karl?  If you’re a fan of all things zombies, you’ll love this show.

Anyway, back to Finn…

finnplaying Finn looking playful

finngarden Finn looking thoughtful

finncollar Finn looking just plain adorable

Finn is a great addition to our family but I can’t wait until he’s old enough to start running with me.  Then it will be Slow Girl and really, really fast dog!  He will be the perfect solution to my “I don’t wanna run blues.”

I’ve become THAT lady

So we got a puppy this weekend.  It’s really quite awesome.  He’s a beautiful whippet named Finn Fandango.  He’s not the “fast dog” in my “slow girl fast dog” name.  Not yet anyway.  That’s Theron…the fast one.  Finn is the 10 week old, energetic, highly curious, and kind of klutzy puppy we recently acquired.

I’m embarrassed to say that I’ve turned into THAT Lady.  You know the one…she incessantly talks about her kid, or cat, or dog or whatever the big deal in her life happens to be at the moment.  I think I’m that lady.  Like a Dog Lady.  Not that I have a lot of dogs but let’s put it this way, I have more pictures of my dogs than my child.

The good thing is, when I show my puppy pictures to people, they get to see an adorable dog, not some odd-looking newborn.  I know you know what I’m talking about.  How many cute 10 week old babies do you know (besides your own, of course)?  Honestly?  My husband and I have a code word for the not-yet-cute newborn.  It’s U.B. (Ugly Baby).  If we’re walking in a store and see one we look at each other and whisper, “Oh my gosh, did you see that U.B.?”  I know, I’m going to hell for even saying that but it’s true.  I have to wonder if the cute gene even kicks in prior to 10 weeks.  My kid certainly wasn’t all that cute when he was 10 weeks old.  But 12 weeks?  He was freaking adorable.

Anywho,  I am going to be THAT lady who goes on and on and on about her cute puppy and all the amazing puppy things it can do.  I will look a cat person straight in the eye and tell them a puppy story knowing they don’t care but not caring that they don’t care.  The way I see it, if you don’t love a good puppy story, what kind of human are you?  Probably one that be joining me in hell for coining the UB term.  Just kidding, we’re not all going to hell.

It is clear that I will end up raising this puppy similar to the way I have raised my son:  Totally overprotective, completely oblivious to flaws (because there are none), and full of quasi-psycho adoration.  Yeah, I’m pretty sure parenting a puppy will be along the same lines as parenting a child (less the birthing, breastfeeding and burping).  But everything else…Totally the same.  🙂

Here are some examples:

  • I can’t tell you how many pictures we’ve taken of him on his first day.  Really cute ones.  See? (props to the husband for the photos)

Finn posing for the camera

Finn looking adorable

  • You have to watch them like a hawk.  Those puppies are nosey little buggers.  Don’t eat this, don’t stick your paw in that, don’t stick that in your nose (just kidding about that one).  It’s never-ending.

    Finn sampling the grapes in the yard

  • You have to buy them special puppy things:  Puppy food, puppy toys, puppy treats, puppy crates, puppy blankies, you name it.  Just like babies need special baby things.  Cha-Ching.
  • I constantly worry about him.  I actually checked on him when he was sleeping to make sure he was still breathing.  No kidding.  I did the same thing with my son.  I’m sure that won’t last long…maybe a year?
  • Speaking of sleeping.  They do not sleep through the night.  It sucks, just like when a baby doesn’t sleep through the night.  I think I will hook Finn up with one of those teddy bears that has the heart beat sound in it.  I wonder if that would work.  It worked for my son.
  • You have to puppy proof the house and yard.  The good thing is you don’t have to put those things on the toilet.  I always hated those.  And no outlet plugs or cupboard locks.  Mostly we just have to keep our crap picked up which we should be doing anyway.
  • You have to give them shots and get their teeth cleaned.  I’m pretty sure it costs more to maintain a healthy dog than a healthy child.
  • You have to potty train them and reward them when they go in the right place…Outside.  The difference is, I won’t give my puppy a sticker when he goes potty outside…I will give him a puppy treat.  I suppose I could put a “Way to Go” sticker on him (pun intended) but he would probably eat it and then I’d have to say, “Spit that out Finn!!!  Spit that out right now!!”
  • You come up with nicknames for them, because you love them.  Here’s my first round of nicknames for Finn Fandango:  Finny, Finfan, the Finster, FinFin, The Finstantor, Finorama, Finny Linny.  That’s  all I’ve got for now but I’m sure there’s more where those came from…don’t you fret.

My first weekend of puppy motherhood I’ve come to realize how true that old saying is, “With a great puppy comes great responsibility.”   My family and I have agreed that it takes a village and we are all up to the challenge of committing to good, solid puppy parenting.

Even our other dog, Theron, is on board…well, kind of.