Crappy Adulthood Problems

The Elmo on the Shelf

A baby, two jealous bulldogs and an annoying Sesame Street character. It sounds like the beginning of some really lame joke, but it’s actually our very own, brand new Christmas tradition called The Elmo on the Shelf.

Like The Elf on the Shelf, Elmo on the Shelf is also a thing that sits on a shelf of some sort. Except our tradition started after Christmas, is not at all magical and you only move it when the bulldogs find it.

So, we just celebrated our first Christmas as parents with our 10-month old daughter.  She was elated to find a small Elmo in with her Christmas presents, her favorite Sesame Street character. Elmo immediately became her favorite Christmas toy out of the bunch. Christmas was all about her hugging him, burying her face in his and doing that nails-on-the-chalkboard shrieking thing she does when she’s happy.

You know who else was excited about that little red Elmo? Mack.

At 14 years old, Mackie has a touch of the Doggie Dementia, which means his behavior is starting to revert back to a puppy-like stage. Which also means that Mack is not above stealing a prize Christmas toy away from an unsuspecting infant, for the sole purpose of ripping Elmo’s little head right off, purely for sport.

While Hubs and I were preparing a Christmas dinner for my mother (who was not at all thrilled at having someone else host Christmas for the first time in 25 years) I was also busy trying to gently wrestle Elmo (don’t want to tear it!) out of Mackie’s mouth. I tried coaxing Mack with treats, blowing in his face, flicking his nose, trying to pry open his jaws, all while hearing the tiny threads of Elmo’s legs pop one by one. Eventually he dropped it once it became a team effort of Hubs and I sticking our fingers in his mouth and screaming obscenities at him (all the while my oblivious mother was clamoring on about what time we should eat dinner next Christmas at her house, a year from now).

After that scenario replayed itself a few more times, Elmo got a Christmas bath in the washing machine, Mack was separated from the baby toys and I cracked open a new bottle of wine.

The next day or so we paid extra attention to make sure that Mack didn’t get a hold of Elmo, coming close several times. Just when it seemed that Mack had given up on Elmo, here comes Peterbilt trotting into the family room with Elmo in his mouth, ready to curl up in front of the fireplace to disembowel that poor, now slightly tattered, red muppet.

And that is how Elmo on the Shelf was born.

Elmo’s been sitting above our fireplace now for the last 48 hours. Fortunately for our daughter, she’s young enough where once something is out of sight, it’s out of mind as well. Not so much for the bulldogs, who have been looking woefully at our fireplace. Until we figure out how to keep those cold, calculating, murderous bulldogs from torturing a baby toy, Elmo is going into witness protection as an Elf on a Shelf.

 

 

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Categories: Babies, Bulldogs, Crappy Adulthood Problems, Dogs, Farts, Funny, Old People, Pets | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Love Triangle

OK, not a triangle exactly. Maybe a square. Or a pentagon. But either way, shit is going down in a polygon kind of way.

The addition of a baby to our family has been the equivalent of taking an ant farm and shaking the living shit out of it. With schedules, restful sleep, meal times (and blogging times) disrupted, we didn’t know which way was up. Now, 9 months later, the little ants of the family have picked up the pieces and finally have some normalcy again. However, the pecking order has changed.

The pattern has been emerging over the last few weeks. It goes something like this: Me <- Peterbilt <-Peanut <-Mack <- Hubs.

blogpic1Nov2015_edited-1

Actually, that diagram is only representative of us on our best days. Or best day. Meaning that one Wednesday a month ago where we were a well-oiled machine for like 2 hours. Most days it’s just me leading a farty, 4-legged parade throughout the house while I cook and clean and Hubs is over there somewhere on his iPhone:

blogpic2Nov2015_edited-1

Okay. So maybe it’s a shape. More like a line segment. Or a bulldog-baby conga line. Either way, this is how it works. Starting from the bottom:

Mack loves Baby Peanut: Mack doesn’t move around much. He’s old. However, that dog can still bust a move for a tiny, single baby puff, stuck to the ass of a crawling infant.

Mmm mmm. Ass-puffs.

Ever since Mack rearranged our kitchen table and chair set over a small noodle, carelessly tossed by a crabby infant from her high chair, Mack has been banned from the kitchen during Peanut’s feeding times. Now, the highlight of Mack’s day is tracking that squirrely little girl down after meal times and giving her a good ol’ thorough lick down, eating those stuck-on pieces of food straight off of her fanny. And they way that kid smears food all over herself, it’s like a tiny, mobile butt buffet cruising through our house, just ASKING to be nibbled. At least, that’s how Mack put it. At first, Peanut found these bulldog cleaning sessions delightful and hilarious but now in their frequency, they’re annoying and intrusive. The minute that high chair tray comes off, Mack comes barreling out of nowhere like some young and spry 10 year old bulldog. And the unwanted licking advances ensue.

Peanut loves Peterbilt: Babies always want what they can’t have. Mack is the dog that is always available for her to climb, pull his ears and touch his paws, when he’s not forcefully licking her face. Peterbilt, on the other hand, doesn’t put up with ANY of that baby grabass shit and tends to keep his distance from the baby. And that makes Peter all the more enticing to a curious 9-month old.

While Mack spends his non-eating hours laying around, Peterbilt is still young enough to have daily bursts of energy. Much like cats getting ‘the zips’ once a day, Peter does funny things like races through the house on hardwood floors, bumps into furniture, spins, twirls, leaps and shakes his toys….much to Peanut’s delight. She squeals with excitement if he actually stops to acknowledge and sniff her. She watches in admiration as Peter does his best Whip-Nae-Nae (I’ve seen it. It sucks).

Peanut is the only living thing on this planet who thinks Peterbilt is cool and most of her time is spent trying to get on Peter’s good side.

Peterbilt loves me: Meanwhile, Peterbilt spends his time trying to get on my good side.

A year ago, Peter was the type of dog that tolerated my hugs and kisses at best. He’d grunt with annoyance if I tried to snuggle with him. Now that his ‘mom’ is a mom to another, more high-maintenance member of the family, Peter has changed his tune. He’s now constanly on my heals; stealing kisses, hugs, snuggles and nuzzles from me while I’m down on the floor with the baby. He’s also been getting in the habit of laying ON me on those rare occasions I get to lay on the couch. That’s 91 lbs on top of 112 lbs. He’s not exactly a dachshund.

Most recently, he’s taken to licking and being nice to Peanut, just for the praise and kisses he receives from me in response.

And I love….uh…: Mostly I just look at the clock to see if I can start drinking wine.

So here’s an example of how this works: I was playing with Peanut in our family room one evening, before dinner. I opened my arms, knelt down and called Peanut over. Peanut smiled, squeaked and started to crawl over but before she could get to me, Peterbilt walked into my open arms and turned his ass towards my face for a butt-scratch.

Peanut, seeing Peterbilt in my arms, races over.

Mack then follows that tiny, graham cracker flavored cherub.

So it ends up looking like this:

comictiles1

So, as you can imagine, household chores get kind of …..crowded:

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Untitled-1 copy

That’s right. Multiple bodies packed into a 8 square foot area. Everyone with their smells. I found myself relishing my commute to work as it’s the only time of day I’m was myself.

Then one day the in-laws decided to babysit Peanut overnight. Ready for a break, I had her packed up and ready in record time. They came and left. Now was time for a celebration! Kid free adult time!

Hubs and I went out for dinner early and came home. I was leisurely putting away laundry (yes, even baby-free time is still full of chores) and I noticed how eerily quiet it is. Just one link of the chain was missing and everything was different. Peterbilt, no longer competing for attention, was sleeping on the couch. Mack, with no baby butts to lick, was sleeping on the area rug. I was by myself. And although the peace and quiet was nice, it was also rather boring.

It made me count my blessings. Although I’m always followed by a crowd of knee-high animals, I am needed and loved. And with Mack’s limited time left on earth, I now try and take snapshots with my mind so years from now, I can remember clearly when the time when it was just me, my husband, my baby girl and my two crazy bulldogs in our Minnesota home. I may feel pulled in all directions at once now, but one day, I know I’ll give anything just to relive one of these hectic, fart-filled days.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Categories: Babies, Being Married, Bulldogs, Crappy Adulthood Problems, Dogs, Farts, Funny, Pets, Potty Humor | 4 Comments

“You’re Killing Me, Smalls.”

It still amazes me that such a tiny demon human can wreak so much havoc.

7 months old. The “golden age” of babyhood, so they say. Baby’s developing sense of humor, curiosity and inquisitive nature are in full force and boy is it a fun time. Except when it wasn’t, recently.

Peanut was (still is) such a good baby. Good sleeper (kind of), cute, happy and healthy. Always eager to try the next step, I started her on solids at 5 months old. Baby sweet potatoes. Baby carrots. Baby peaches. All met with a gooey, smiling face smeared with food. ‘What a good eater!’, I thought to myself.

And then it came to a screeching halt when she turned 6 months old. I started having a real time trying to feed her dinner. I’d get home. She’d start to fuss, I’d whip out her favorite, pureed carrots, slap a bib her and BOOM!….ready to go, right? Yeah no.

Her cute little nose turned up at the sight of carrots, meal time soon became a horrible shit show of screaming, tears, a messy child and mom cracking open the wine a bit too early.

“What IS this kid’s beef?”, I asked myself. “This kid is hungry but she’s not eating. I must be doing something wrong.”

“Probably!”, said Hubs with a grin, the smart assery not being withheld.

So I had Hubs try to feed her, thinking maybe she just hated my face.

Nope. Apparently she hates his face, too.

Golden age my ass.

For weeks we struggled with dinner and during the weekends, all meals throughout the day. I’d get 2 spoonfuls in of food in and the crying would begin. I’d have to resort to force feeding her during her loudest, open-mouthed wails. Meals typically went like this:

Me: “Okay, peanut! We’ve got some carrots tonight! You like carrots, right??”

Peanut: (staring back, suspiciously.)

Me: (getting about 3 spoonfuls in)

Peanut: (turning her head and starting to fuss, closed mouthed)

Me: “Oh, c’mon. You’ve barely started. C’mon! Say ‘ah’!”

Peanut (continuing to fuss)

Me: (getting a spoonful in when she opens her mouth to moan)

Peanut: “Pbbbbpbbb!” (yeah, that’s her razzing, spraying the food out back at me)

Me: “C’mon! Say ‘ah’! ‘Ah-ah-ah-ah, ah-ah-ah ah!”

Peanut: (starts to dance to the beat)

Me: (eating her carrots)

Peanut: (starts playing with her hands)

Mack Truck: *fart*

Me: “You’re killing me, Smalls.'” (and I start to make her scrambled eggs for the 3rd night in a row)

The shittiest part? She’d eat for everyone else in the world except me. Daycare lady reported she couldn’t feed her fast enough during the day. Grandma said she eats just fine for her. Hell, I’m pretty sure that shifty homeless character that roams our neighborhood and remarks at how good of a watch dog Peterbilt must be (ha!) would have better luck at feeding her her strained peas. Cigarette in tattooed hand and all.

I felt ashamed. “I’m a joke of a mom!”, I’d say to myself. ‘I might as well get Mama June’s phone number so I can get pointers on how to integrate Mountain Dew into Peanut’s diet.’ As a mother, I’m supposed to be the one to keep her well fed, clean and happy but meal-times were the exact opposite of that. To add salt to the wound, she’d wake up hungry multiple times in the night. So now not only was I Suck-mom, I was a very sleep deprived Suck-mom.

I ran myself silly trying to figure out what was wrong. I tried using different high chairs (nope). Different bibs (still ripped them off). Not using a bib (lol). Finger foods (kid can’t live off of scrambled eggs and baby cheese puffs, despite what Mama June said). Buying a special high chair toy (she chucks it across the kitchen. Now a bulldog toy). Re-positioning her high chair to face a different direction (running out of ideas here).

I even (stupidly) tried introducing meats during this time. DO YOU KNOW WHAT JARRED BABY MEAT SMELLS LIKE? For those of you who don’t have kids, it smells an awful lot like wet cat food. And for those of you who have never owned a dog and a cat at the same time, cat food is like caviar for dogs, the holy grail of all foods. It’s stinky and they’re not supposed to have it, which makes it even more irresistible. All it did for me was create an audience of wide-eyed, drooling bulldogs around me and the high chair while Peanut wailed in frustration. Peterbilt with 6″ drool fangs, trying to lick the air and Mack licking the baby’s feet, probably imagining that they were cat-food flavored Popsicles.

I was about to accept the fact that mealtimes were just going to suck thoroughly until Peanut went off to college.

Last week, on whim, I gave her a taste of pears while preparing her dinner. She opened her mouth for more. And more. And more. And I opened a full container of pears which were inhaled. Once that was done, I had her finish off her carrots from the day before. Done. Cracked open a jar of baby beef. Woofed down. No tears. No crying. In fact, she was doing her little happy little babble noises and performing a primitive form of ‘wax on, wax off’ on her high chair table.

Holy crap. I figured it out! I have to prime the Peanut. Basically, start off each meal with a food she really enjoys (pears, yogurt, etc) and then once her appetite has been whetted, start with the veggies and meats. It’s worked every time since. We even have a baby food vocabulary built up:

Baby opens mouth, eats food, gulps, opens mouth in fast succession = Is good.

Baby casually eats = Meh.

Baby sprays out food at face = Rather not.

Baby spits out food and shudders = Um, yuck?

Added bonus? Her large supper allows her to sleep through the night. And I’ll drink to that.

Cheers. To the next hurdle. *Clink!*

Categories: baby, Being Married, Crappy Adulthood Problems, Farts, Funny, Pets | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Really??? REALLY????

I woke up on Sunday morning fully expecting the day to be uneventful and secretly hoping to get a nap in at some point.

It certainely seemed to start off normal: I woke up around 8 AM to Mack sneezing in my face, his head eagerly perched on the edge of my bed with his nub wagging, hoping to get his breakfast. I got up, let Peterbilt and Mack outside to do their business. They both took their wizzes as fast as they could and raced back to the back door. I quickly opened the sliding glass door as they clamored over each other to be the first one in, both running to the refrigerator where we keep the dog food. That scene in Christmas Story played in my head where that gang of multiple, neighborhood mutts stampede into Ralphie’s kitchen and devour their Christmas turkey.  And Ralphy’s old man though he had problems…the next few minutes would prove his ornery ass WRONG.

Preparing the dog food, I spilled some of the kibble on the floor. This started WW3 between the hungry bulldogs as they growled and fought for their share. I started to yell at both dogs, mostly Peterbilt since he’s the bigger asshole of the two, and my husband ran into the kitchen and dove into the pile. Peter started to run off, with my husband chasing him down. Peter did a quick turn and my husband rolled his ankle. All we heard was a SNAP and him collapsing to the floor in pain, howling.

I ran over to assess the situation. Both bulldogs, over their food rage and clearly feeling guilty, shifted and paced nervously by my husband, who was holding his left foot and rolling around on the floor. Peterbilt even doused my husbands face in a few, sloppy, submissive kisses.

I helped Hubs back to our room, elevated his foot and grabbed an ice pack. The bulldogs hovered over him like nervous, untrained nurses, sniffing and resniffing my husband. Eventually within 5 minutes, things calmed down and they both forgot my husband was injured, going back to their default task of hovering around the pregnant lady. Sorry Hubs. It’s time to play second fiddle again.

After an hour, we decided to take my Hubs into urgent care where we waited 2 hours, surrounded by people with the flu, to be told what we already knew: a broken ankle bone.

Hubs is to wear a brace, use crutches and not put any weight on his left foot for 6-8 weeks.

Baby’s due date is in 2 weeks.

My doctor told me 1 week ago that she doesn’t want me on my feet as much because of the swelling in my legs and ankles.

Hubs started graduate school 2 weeks ago.

Great job everyone and a big thank you, Peterbilt, you fucking assclown. This couldn’t be timed anymore perfectly.

Do you know that bulldogs don’t care if you’re tired or injured? Even when said injury is a direct result of their misbehavior? Nope, much like small children, they want what they want and they want it NOW!

Why am I suddenly not getting walks?!?!?!

Why am I suddenly not getting walks?!?!?!

So now instead of spending my Sunday napping and assembling last minute baby gear, I’m on my feet, letting a belligerent, senile old bulldog outside before he revenge pees the kitchen rug, keeping the bone-snapping-ankle-crushing-maniac-bulldog from humping my maternity body pillow AGAIN and refilling Hub’s glass of juice for the third time.

A couple of very unlucky, Century link sales reps came knocking at our front door not to long after that and let’s just say…..they have probably black listed our address from all future sales calls. I’m the Bitch from Hell in the Tan house. Don’t go there.

So now I’ve got a needy husband, two shrieking bulldogs and baby girl is finding new and painful nooks and crannies to stick her legs into. And then there’s me, looking at the calendar and counting down the days until I can drink white wine again.

Grumpy and tired, I went to bed around 10 PM. As I’m drifting off, Hubs started to laugh. Laughing so hard he’s shaking the bed. “What.”, I said.

Hubs said to me, “I just love so you much.”

“Why?”, I asked.

He laughed ever harder and managed to compose himself after a while to say, “Because your fucking awesome! Here you are: full-term pregnant, taking care of my ass while I snap at you because I’m in pain, Mack’s shrieking for his Kong

Now, woman!

Now, woman!

and Peterbilt’s…..well…being Peterbilt…… and your still keeping this family glued together!”

Well now thanks a lot, Hubs. Because now I’m crying. Again.

February is going to be interesting.

Categories: Babies, Bulldogs, Crappy Adulthood Problems, Dogs, Pets, Pregnancy | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Our Christmas Miracle

Besides a healthy baby on the way and Mack and Pete’s ever growing tolerance for each other, our family had even more to be thankful for this past Christmas season.

A few weeks ago, Hubs and I decided Mack was ripe enough to toss his ass in the tub and give an old, pissed off bulldog something more to complain about. Mackie got a double shampooing, full-on brush treatment in the bathtub and a detailed wash between his toes, which he absolutely despises. He was good and pissed off by the time the bath was over.

Hubs and I split the bathing of the bulldogs in half, Hubs half being bigger than mine, of course. While Hubs lifts the dogs in and out of the tub, wrestles the bulldogs in the tub and washes them, I chase them around the bathroom and towel dry them the best I can.

Towel drying the bulldogs is a wrestling match all on its own. Mack usually takes a few laps around the bathroom to walk off the aggravation the bath causes. I’m toweling him off the whole way but it’s all I can do not to jump on his back and ride him like a bull.

I went to dry off Mack’s head, neck and ears. Knowing that I had just a few seconds of Mack holding still for me, I quickly and aggressively toweled off his head and ears, Mack fighting back by thrashing his head all around inside the towel. After a few minutes, I finally got Mack dried off enough to set him free, Mack making a bee line for our fuzzy area rug in front of the fire.

After a half an hour or so, we noticed Mack’s right side ear was puffed up. Like, REALLY swollen. His ear flap is normally about an eighth of an inch thick. Now it was an inch thick.

My knee jerk diagnoses was allergies, but Hubs was already on his iPhone Googling away. His diagnoses was spot on: Aural Hematoma.

Mack’s ear flap was bleeding internally, all from my asshole toweling methods. Even worse, every website and thread from dog owners said that aural hematomas were only corrected by surgery, since the bleeding only continues to the point where the ear basically explodes. A visual of Mack shaking his head off in pain, spraying blood in every crevice of our house played out in my head.

I felt awful. Not only did I injure my poor, fat ol’ puppy Mack, now it’s looking like I will have to hand over my Christmas bonus to a vet for the 2nd year in a row (see https://houseoffarts.wordpress.com/2014/01/10/why-i-havent-posted-in-a-few-weeks/  )

Even worse, a 13-year old geriatric bulldog will now have to go under for surgery, which is quite risky.

Distraught, we took Mack to the vet, where they confirmed that he would probably end up on the operating table but the doctor wanted to give it the good college try before doing so, given Mack’s dinosaur age status.

Mack’s ear was drained, then flipped over to flatten it against his head. A bandage was tightly wrapped around his head to keep the ear compressed, hoping the ear would start to heal on its own. The doctor again warned us that this would be a long shot and promised to get a quote for the surgery over to us right away.

Babushka Mack mourns for your soul.

Babushka Mack mourns for your soul.

We were told to remove the bandage in 5 days. After Day 4, Mack decided he’d had enough and removed it himself. One moment Mack was just sitting there, sporting his head wrap, not giving a fuck.

Mack, not givin' a fuck

Mack, not givin’ a fuck

The next, Mack was wearing nothing but a flesh-colored infinity scarf and a shit-eating grin:

This isn't the actual picture, but that shit-eating grin is pretty much the same.

This isn’t the actual picture, but that shit-eating grin is pretty much the same.

And his ear, was back to its inflammed state. Shit.

The next day, we brought Mack back to the vet. The doctor wanted to try draining his ear again, but this time taping it down to prevent a certain, crafty old bulldog from removing it. They also put him on a regimen of Prednisone to hopefully speed up the healing process. Which, by the way they had to run up bloodwork for. And which we found out, that Mack’s heart and kidney function are FUCKING OUTSTANDING for his advanced age. So that was our shred of good news.

5 more days went by of Mack, trying his damnedest to take his bandage off. Hubs and I started calling him Babushka Mack, made Yakov Smirnoff jokes and sarcastically asked Mack what he missed about the old country. Mack was not enthused.

Do not ill speak of Mother Russia.

Do not ill speak of Mother Russia.

Hell, Peterbilt even felt sympathy for his dickhead dad and even gave Mackie a lick on the face. It was awkward for all parties involved.

After 5 days, we brought Mack to the vet where they took him in back to remove the tape.

After 20 minutes or so, Mack came running full speed at us, away from the vet techinician……his ear back to normal appearance.

The doctor warned us to keep Mack from flapping his ears around, possibly undoing the healing, for the next 2-3 days.

And I am pleased to tell you that that was 2 weeks ago and Mackie is 100% healed! Hooray! No surgery!

We managed to skirt a risky and most likely painful dog surgery for our Christmas present and that gift beats the PANTS off of anything else we could have asked for. Including those As-Seen-On-TV Glow Candles I got. Thanks, Mom.

Because one minute you may want a red candle and the next, you may really want it to be blue.

Because one minute you may want a red candle and the next, you may really want it to be blue.

Categories: Being Married, Bulldogs, Crappy Adulthood Problems, Dogs, Pets, Potty Humor | Tags: , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Double Trouble

2014 has been the year of change at House of Farts.

Ladies and gentlemen, after 4 long and work-intensive years, Mack and Peterbilt have decided to bury the hatchet and have agreed to coexist (somewhat) peacefully on the same level/room/area of the house. That’s right, no more keeping the bulldogs separated within the house.

This was decided recently by Mack. The older and more deaf Mack gets (and the more visibly pregnant I get) Mack is finding it harder and harder to leave my side. “Ok, Ok, I concede”, Mack told me one afternoon about 2 months ago. “I’ll acknowledge Peterbilt as my son. Now let’s all lay on the area rug and lick our paws.”

Peterbilt, less than enthused about now having to split our attention with his dickhead dad, agreed to treat his dad’s now constant presence with respect.

Yay! Right?? We can have a normal-ish family again! Eh, Yes and no. As much as we are happy to have everyone get along, having 170 lbs of bulldog to deal with versus 85 lbs at a time, is a lot of work!

Over the last several weeks, Hubs and I have noticed that there are as many PROS as CONS to our new living situation.

PRO:

1.) Less Shrieking.

Having both dogs in the kitchen as I make dinner is a lot quieter than having Peterbilt in the kitchen and Mack in the finished basement, shrieking with every pang of his broken heart at his exclusion. Now both bulldogs can stand by my feet and hold their breath as I chop carrots, hoping to God that one slips off the counter and falls to the floor.

CON:

1.) Higher fart content

Having both bulldogs in close proximity means more fart air to regular air, in parts per million. Tonight, we will be serving Dijon Chicken and baby carrots with hint of fart. Just dab some Vicks under your nose, dear, It’ll be alright.

 

"We heard there were carrots..."

“We heard there were carrots…”

PRO:

2.) Bigger fan base.

Now instead of one bulldog totally devoted to following me and watching my every move, I have two. The bulldogs totally give my location away every time, no matter where I am in the house. Are the bulldogs totally quiet? That means they’re laying with me on the bed sleeping. Do you hear thunderous noises? That’s the bulldogs following (trampling) me as i go downstairs to put in another load of laundry? Two bulldogs glumly laying outside the shut bathroom door? Well, you know I’m doing then. Painting my nails. Because ladies don’t poop.

CON:

If I don’t close the bathroom door all of the way, it means now two heads are poking inside to check on me instead of just one. I get very little privacy.

The good old days of only only bulldog head.

The good old days of only only bulldog head.

 

They’ve already figured out that they have Hubs and I evenly matched with a 2:2 ratio and have used this to their advantage already, using teamwork to knock a bag of dog treats off the table and to take out a 40 lb bag of kibble, even sharing the spoils. And our bedroom has been converted into “Bulldog HQ”. They’ve taken over that room as their area of choice for gnawing on their bones, Kongs and other toys. We kick twice as many dog possessions of our of bed now and It is almost guaranteed I will stub my toe on a half-chewed up antler on the way to the bathroom in the middle of the night.

 

We love it and are daunted by it at the same time. With the new workload, it makes me wonder how we will ever fit in time to take care of a newborn, but I guess that will all work itself out somehow.

 

In the meantime, Hubs and I thank God that he’s given us what we’ve asked for, for so long: a loving, little bulldog family. At least, that’s what we try to repeat in our heads while cleaning up 40 lbs of kibble and drool off of the floor.

Categories: Babies, Being Married, Bulldogs, Crappy Adulthood Problems, Dogs, Farts, Funny, Pets, Potty Humor, Pregnancy | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Rest in Peace, Dad

A poem to my late father:

Your Last Day

The day that I last saw you, you were lying on your bed.

“You’re dad is really tired”, is what the nurse had said.

I did think you were sleeping, as you did that more and more.

Your disease had been rendering you weak, and you fell often on the floor

 

I called your name aloud, but you didn’t open your eyes

you continued to lay there with your Parkinson’s shake, arms laying by your side.

So I talked with you anyways, just like you were awake

and told you how I bought your favorite kind of milkshake.

 

I told you how everything was great and mom was doing OK

that you needn’t worry about a thing, and ‘Happy Father’s Day’

Before we left I told you I loved you and gave you a little kiss

I said I’d see you tomorrow and had your shake put in the fridge.

 

However, as I was leaving, I did not know that was actually ‘goodbye’

I received a call just hours later that my father had just died.

I wondered if my words were all that he needed to know

that hearing that everyone was OK was enough for him to let go.

 

Dad, now I look up to the sky and think of you every day

I’m eternally grateful that I visited you on your very last day.

Life can change in a blink of an eye. it’s scary but it’s true.

Tomorrow is never a guarantee. Dad, I miss and love you.

 

James M. Cheney – May 2, 1945 – June 16, 2014

 

 

 

 

 

 

Categories: Crappy Adulthood Problems, letter to my father, Old People, parkinson's disease | Tags: , , , , | Leave a comment

Hangovers and Bulldogs.

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Nowadays, there are two ways that I remember times in my life: before bulldogs and after bulldogs.

Before I had bulldogs, I could go out with friends and get rip roaring drunk, come home, fall into to bed and go to sleep without any issue. I could sleep in as long as I wanted the following the morning and be completely worthless the rest of the day without it impacting anyone else. Granted, before I had bulldogs, I was also a single woman so I also didn’t have a husband to feed and nurse morning after because his hangover was worse than mine.

Now that I have a husband, and two very clingy bulldogs, going out and drinking to excess has consequences I could have never imagined six years ago. The following post chronicles the costs of getting drunk and being hungover “After Bulldogs”:

Saturday night, Da Hubs and I attended a friend’s 30th birthday party in downtown Minneapolis at a piano bar. We consciously made the decision that we were both going to get blitzed and take a cab home because you know what? Let’s pretend we’re turning 30 all over again, too. It seemed like a good idea at the time.

Six hours and $200 later, we stumbled into our driveway and tipped the cab driver. Laughing to ourselves in our stupid, drunken pride because we were totally “those drunk people” tonight, we opened the front door to be greeted by a very nervous Peterbilt.

The unfamiliar cab that had pulled up in our driveway had scared the crap out of him. Once he realized it was us, his nub was crazily wagging with an “I’m so glad it’s just you guys” expression on his face. His excitable movements and forced sniffing of our feet and legs (I call this Sniff Rape) made it all the more difficult to take off our shoes and coats without stumbling. It seemed he was telling us about every scary moment of our absence. Peter still can’t say his R’s:

“Oh, you guys it was so scawee while you were gones! At first der was dis noise, wight? And I was all like woofwoofwoof and I did dats at every window! Den der was dis squirrel..”

“OKOKOK!”, I said to Peterbilt. “Take it down a notch and why don’t go outside?”

We let Peterbilt out and checked on Mackie who was sleeping downstairs on his favorite couch. We shut the light off and closed the door.

We let Peterbilt in and we prepared to get ready for bed. I moved Peterbilt and his dog bed into the den and shut the doors. It was about that time that Max started shrieking downstairs.

“Great! Fatass is up”, I said to my husband, who when I turned around wasn’t there. He was already in bed fast asleep. Fucker.

Guess my drunkass will just DO EVERYTHING FROM NOW UNTIL THE END OF TIME!!!!!!

So I let Mack outside, me standing at the back door face palming while he took his sweetass time. I marched Mr. Mack downstairs to put him in the bed, but he just wasn’t having it.

Side note about Mack: you can physically put him in the dog bed, but in the end, Mack is going to tell YOU when HE goes to sleep. If you leave him downstairs before he decided he’s tired enough to go to sleep, the shrieking ensues. Mack tells you he’s tired by jumping up on his couch and by giving you one long and exaggerated yawn.

So Mack taking this opportunity to take out every single toy out of his box and chew on each of them, just to piss me off because I was gone for so long. “Go the fuck to sleep, dog”, I said to Mack.

After about 10 minutes of him stalling and me cradling my dizzy head in my hands, he heaved his hefty body up on his old, ratty couch, gave his trademark yawn and decided it was time.

I walked back upstairs, changed into my pajamas and was sinking into a nice bed-spinny slumber when Peterbilt started whining. And whining. And crying. After 10 minutes I finally said screw it and let him on our bed to go to sleep. Desperate times, desperate measures.

Again, I’m falling asleep and all of a sudden I feel a big thump on the bed and hear the sound of a bulldog chewing on a bone. “Oh HELL no!” I said and took the bone away and set it on my night stand. That was the last thing I remembered before going to sleep.

I woke up Sunday morning with my head pounding and a huge weight on my stomach. I groggily opened my eyes to find Peterbilt staring right back at me, his nub wagging so hard the bed is shaking. His head is on my stomach and his feet are on my husband, to create a sort of fucked up looking letter H. Which probably stands for Hell or Hangover or Holy Shit I Drank Too Much.

I sat up, head pounding more so and looked around which was just enough confirmation for Peterbilt the breakfast was near. He lept off the bed and tore ass across the house to his food bowl. I looked at our bed and somehow during the night, another bone and Peter’s stuffed rabbit had made it onto our bed.

I hadn’t even made it out of bed yet when my husband asked me, “Do you have any coffee made yet?”

“……..You gotta be fucking kidding me.”

And then Mack started shrieking.

Peterbilt is singing for his breakfast in the kitchen.

Husband is groaning and asking for Advil.

Did I mention that MY FUCKING HEAD IS POUNDING?!????

15 minutes later, everyone was taken care of. I sat down at the kitchen table and tried to settle my stomach with coffee. This is about the time that Peterbilt took it upon himself to voice his displeasure at our stagnation. Mack added to the effect by finding Peterbilt ‘s stuffed rabbit squeaky toy and proceeding to chew on it. Every squeak like a hammer in our heads.

I looked over at Hubs and asked, “Anything you want to add while we ‘re at it ?” He farted.

Indeed, times have changed. I guess from now on I should watch my alcohol consumption on Saturday because I’m going to have to go right back to being a bulldog mom and wife on Sunday morning. Funny how not too long ago, I wasn’t even a part of this bulldog family. Now, it would literally fall apart without me. But at least I would’ve been well rested.

Categories: Being Married, Bulldogs, Crappy Adulthood Problems, Dogs, Farts, Funny, Pets, Potty Humor | Tags: , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

The “Elvis Presley”

So much of my humor is lost on my coworkers that I wonder why I even keep trying. Any joke or smart-alekly comment usually results in deer-in-headlight looks and them walking away, leaving me to snicker quietly to myself at my desk and then blog about it.

So Minneapolis has gotten it’s first Which Wich. I’ve seen these sandwich chains while visiting other states but have not eaten at one. Apparently, the sandwiches there impressed my boss, which is aggravating because that means a sandwich is more impressive than my 10 years of service. So impressed, that he pretty much rattled off every ingredient and sandwich they carried there. He was especially excited about someday trying the “Elvis Presley” (he doesn’t get out much). Apparently, this sandwich includes Peanut Butter, Bacon, Banana and Honey.

I asked “Does it have Quaaludes in it, too? Heh Heh heh heh”.

(crickets)

Le sigh. Heh heh heh heh. Typy-Typy.

"You ain't nothing but a hot dog...."

“You ain’t nothing but a hot dog….”

Categories: Crappy Adulthood Problems, Funny | Tags: , , , , , | Leave a comment

3 Years, 29 Days

To My Dad:

I am writing this to you even thought I know well enough that you aren’t able to read any more and your thoughts are only getting more jumbled, morbid and hard to process. But I’m angry at you.

3 years and 29 days.

That is the amount of time it took for you to go from a respected man with a full time job in middle management to a resident at a nursing home. A man that got up in the morning, put his clothes and shoes on without struggle, drove to work without rear-ending another car, went to work and made important decisions. Yes, only 3 years and 29 days from the moment you retired to the night we had to come and take you from your bed, your things, your dog and your home. Forever. Here are some other numbers for you:

10 – Those are the number of years it’s been since you were diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease. That is also the same amount of time it’s been since you decided that you would only deal with your disease by throwing medication at it, even though that General Practitioner you insisted on seeing told you that your medicine had a limit and then there would be nothing else that could be done for you. 10 years of insisting that going to a specialist wasn’t necessary because you had a handle on your degenerative disease.

14- Those are the number of Carba-dopa/Levadopa pills you were taking a day when you used to call me up at work to tell me that silent puppet people were living in your house and that your mother, who passed away in 2004, was conspiring with my Mom to kill you. The maximum dosage a day for that pill is 8 because any more than that causes hallucinations.

16 – That is the average number of hours you spent in front of the TV daily after you retired because you didn’t have a plan for retirement. You essentially let yourself rot in front of Western Channel. You let your pride and embarrassment from your disability prevent you from leaving the house and attempting to enrich your life by meeting other people your own age, trying new activities and making new friends. In my eyes, you never had anything to be embarrassed about.

2 – 2 Years ago is when I really noticed the drastic decline in your cognitive function and motor skills. That is also when you started to tell me that you were depressed but when I brought up ideas of things you could do you get you out of the house, you made excuses for yourself.

18 – 18 months of my husband and I hounding you to sign up for Metro Mobility so you wouldn’t be a hazard on the road. 18 months of asking nicely and then after a while,  not so nicely telling you that a senior day center would be beneficial to you and Mom. After 18 months, you and Mom told both of us to mind our own business and to quit asking. So we did.

3 – The number of times mom had to call 911 because you fell, could not get up and mom was unable to physically lift you.

4 – On December 30, 2013, this was the number of hours you were lying on the bedroom floor before my husband and I found you and after Mom called us frantic at work because you weren’t answering the phone. You fell two more times that day after Mom came home.

5 – 5:00 PM December 30, 2013. That’s when we realized that this was the day we knew it was all over. The day we saw coming years ago. The day where Dad’s disease would render him weak and helpless to the point that he could no longer be safe at home by himself while Mom worked. This is is the day we took you from your home.

4 – The amount of car accidents you were in in the last 2 years because your reflexes were deteriorating. We heard about many things after the fact, including how we found out you were driving up until the last moment because both you and Mom were keeping it secret.

3.6 – Your score on the Allen Dementia test upon arrival at the nursing home.

4.6 – The minimum score they recommend for someone fit to drive.

0 – The amount of times I’ve had a conversation with you recently were you asked me about how things were going in my life, or my sister’s life, or my husband’s life, or talked about anybody other than yourself. I took the TV out of my living room and put it in your room since the nursing home did not provide you with one, because I wanted to make you happy. All it did was make you complain about the picture quality and the remote control you that loose and accuse the staff of stealing. Your dementia has widdled your capacity for caring about others down to nothing.

6 – The amount of times that you’ve called me in the middle of the night because you can no longer tell time of day.

3 – The amount of months until my sister has her baby. A baby boy you that will only remember Grandpa from pictures and stories.

Dad,  I’m angry at you because I feel cheated. I’m angry at you for cheating me out of a father at 33. I’m angry that you cheated mom out of a husband and left her a woman alone in a large house without the basic understanding of how her own fucking TV works. I’m angry that you will never know my future children. Sometimes I worry that by the time I get pregnant and give birth, that you won’t know who I am anymore.

I’m angry at you for giving up when you should have put up the fight of your life. For Christ Sake’s you were a combat soldier!! As a disabled veteran, you had so many resources at your disposal. There were exercises, both physical and mental that you could have done. Support groups you could have attended. Diets you could have tried. Counseling that you and Mom should have sought. You could still be living in your house if you would have chosen to take that help. Sadly, you chose not to and now, at 68, you are in a nursing home and will be for the rest of your life.

I’m mad at me, too, you know. I watched you deteriorate for 3 years and 29 days and there wasn’t a damn thing I could do about it. I wish I could have made you see that there was nothing to be afraid of and that accepting help isn’t a sign of weakness, but a sign of strength. I screamed. I yelled. I jumped up and down but I could not get through to you. I used every tactic I could to try to get to you to see what everyone saw coming a million miles away. All I can do at this point is promise myself that if I ever end up or a terminal or degenerative disease, I will do what ever it takes to keep myself as healthy for as long as I can for the sake of my family. I owe it to my husband and future children to do just that. And to never stop fighting.

Dad, I still love you. If I didn’t, I wouldn’t be so damn angry. That’s what’s so fucked up about this situation.  I thought you knew how fragile and short life was.

I’m sorry I had to take you from your home and please excuse me while I get over my anger at you. I know deep down you never intended to cheat your family out of anything and your unreasonable fears of doctor’s offices was probably the cause of some undiagnosed anxiety disorder that you tried to hide from everyone.

You’re fading fast and I’m not sure how much time I have left with you. I’ll always try to do my best to visit you as much as I can, Dad. I love you. I miss you and I hope tonight that your dreams take you back to a pleasant time in  your life.

-Your Daughter Sarah

Categories: Crappy Adulthood Problems | Tags: , , | 3 Comments

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