Sunday, March 28, 2010

The New Normal

Nothing like a life-changing event to, well, change your life. Let's see . . . since last posting, FryDaddy is home and (mostly) okay, although we both have days in which the fears come a-callin'. But we're adjusting.

Work is both a saving grace and a massive annoyance. It's good to have something to focus on (not to mention something that I at least have the illusion of controlling), but my temper is seldom level. I swear, I managed to misplace a parking pass walking from Point A to Point B last week and it's clear that my attitude toward students is a bit - frayed, shall we say. And the work that has piled up! Sheesh. But again, it's getting better.

There's much to be grateful for in all of this. The two dogs are getting along fine and Haint is adjusting to crate-training without too much rending of garments and gnashing of teeth. Spring is definitely on its way, complete with sudden thunderstorms, but dogs (and clothes!) dry and it's good for what will one day be my vegetable garden. People have been overwhelmingly kind and helpful and all truly is well. Everything important, anyway.

It's just a shame it takes something like this to make me see it. Then again, I really do seem to be determined to learn the hard way, sometimes.

Sigh. But it still counts as learning.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Medical Technology and Gratitude

Much has happened since the last posting. Little Haint has become a part of the family and we have our fingers crossed that the heartworm treatment is successful.

Speaking of hearts, FryDaddy is dealing with some cardiac issues. Three years back, he had to have a cardiac defibrillator implanted in his heart. Long story, let's not go into the details. The idea behind it is that if his heart ever goes wonky (it's a technical word, I know), the "device" will shock his heart back into working properly.

Only on Thursday, it needed to and it didn't.

So we're in the hospital, having tests run and (mostly) waiting to have tests run. We've been in one hospital or another since Thursday afternoon and we'll be in one hospital or another for the next few days. You always need to pack your sense of humor (and the laptop!) and maybe even more so at the hospital. So - a partial list of things to remember:

1. Vampires should look at working in the health-care field. No one blinks when you come in at 2 a.m. to take blood.
2. IV stands make great places to hang baseball caps.
3. Be sure to refer to your cardiologist as a "mechanic" and ask if that pine tree scented air freshener comes with your tune-up.
4. Hospital coffee is just awful. Plan accordingly.

I know that last one isn't funny; it's just good, hard, practical advice.

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Funny How Things Work . . .

I've always attracted strays. It's just one of those quirks of mine. And strays come when they will; it's not the sort of thing one can order and arrange.

I know this, but that knowledge didn't stop me from being greatly surprised when a medium-sized mutt adopted me yesterday while the Spookster and I were out walking (in preparation for our upcoming assault on Cerro Aconcagua, but that's a tale for another time). Friendly li'l fella, very well-mannered. He walks on a leash well and seems to be well behaved in the house (although he has a penchant for hopping up on the couch, which is a strict no-no in the bounds of our pack).

You may be asking yourself, "Mockingbird, what are you doing? Clearly, this critter has been owned by someone who taught him these rules of civilized behavior. You can't be thinking of keeping this animal - someone, somewhere must be missing him terribly!"

To which I say, "Ha." And furthermore, pffft! Look, this dog is so thin, he makes runway models look like a size fourteen. When a dog gets that skinny, he hasn't just been missing a day or two. There are no signs up in my neighborhood and the dog doesn't have tags. He's been living hard recently and I see no reason whatsoever to return a good dog to a home that would treat a kindly creature in that fashion.

So he's been flea-bathed and de-wormed. He's got his own crate (many thanks to Texas Woolf) so he doesn't have to sleep outside in the cold anymore. Tomorrow, it's off to the vet to check on his overall health and find out what sort of bloodlines he's got (more for curiosity's sake than me having certain breed standards). And, bless his cat-lovin' heart, FryDaddy has christened him. Since the doggy-not-in-the-window bears an uncanny resemblance to Spooky's country cousin, he will now be known as "Haint." Makes sense - I already had a bottle tree in the back yard; it's only natural that it eventually attracted a haint.

Looks like the Nest is a two-dog household now.

Monday, March 1, 2010

Falling Down & Picking Up

Hmmm - I've often said that February seems like the longest of months, rather than the shortest. In my corner of the world, it tends to be cold and grey and windy, without even the benefit of snow to make things pretty and contain the potential of a snow day. (And listen to me well on this one, children. No one ever outgrows the little thrill of excitement that comes with a snow day! It may be tempered a bit as you grow older, but oh, it's still there!)

And this February was a bit of a downer for other reasons - natural disasters abounded, the High Museum trip didn't happen (due to - ready for this - snow. See? Sometimes snow days aren't all that great), work piled up in great looming towers, and so forth and so on. Really, it wasn't that bad a time in the Nest - cross reference with things like tsunamis and earthquakes for a sense of proportion - but it was February.

Aha! But now it's March. And while bad weather may still threaten (maybe tomorrow, actually) and while work may be filled with more chores than joys at the moment, etc. etc., there are daffodils almost blooming in the front yard and a St. Patrick's Day flag flapping merrily outside. And while I fell down a bit on keeping up with this blog, I'm now trying to lurch back to my feet.

I think I need a kite. And to carve out some time to fly it.