Monday, October 29, 2012

Food Obsessed

I haven't really ever talked much about Kale on here, because, well, he is the second. And that is just the way things go. Here is a list of things you need to know about him...

  1. He loves food. Probably more than anything else.
  2. He loves to swim.
  3. He loves to run.
  4. He loves to go to doggie daycare and play with his friends.
  5. He understands that Kabo is the alpha.
  6. He loves to snuggle.
  7. He loves to "play" with Sampson, and Sampson often "plays" back.
The reason why I got Kale when I did was because I knew that Kabo was getting older and I wanted to have another dog that had all of his good attributes. Kabo doesn't run away when off leash, stays in our yard, knows a bunch of tricks like sit and down and wave, and generally knows when to leave a person alone. (If you pet him, he will be your best friend. If you don't look at him, he'll have nothing to do with you. For at least a few minutes. He does eventually try to win over even the hardest of non-dog-loving hearts.) Everyone who knows Kabo loves Kabo. And I knew that I would be raising this new dog in a totally different environment than we raised Kabo. I know that I wasn't solely responsible for his awesome-ness, so I knew that I needed help with a puppy.

When I went to get Kale, there were still six other puppies left out of the twelve in his litter. I was able to witness feeding time, and it was basically a black puppy eating frenzy. They were polite, no growling or such, but pretty much went in a circle around the bowl, perfectly synchronized, scarfing down as much food as they possibly could before any of the other puppies got more than their fair share. The first time I met him, the breeder brought him up from the kennel area and I attempted to see if he liked me. Because really, I liked him, he was a puppy, what was there NOT to like? But he seemed more interested in what was in the kitchen than me or any affection I might give him. He was sniffing at the counter and didn't want to be anywhere near the living room, where we were sitting on the floor. When we took him outside, the story completely changed, and that is why I chose him to come home with me...because he chose me.

Now, a year and a half later, Kale's favorite room of the house is still the kitchen. When the kids eat at the bar, he is positioned between them, staring up, just waiting for something to fall. He considers the chairs fair game if the food doesn't make it into the girls' mouths, and willingly cleans them off, whether the girls were going to eat that bite or not. When we eat together as a family, and especially when we have guests, I have to put him in the laundry room, because he literally cannot help himself. He knows that he shouldn't beg, yet he inches closer and closer to the table until you look down and his nose is right next to the hand which is holding your fork.

I've tried making him stay in a certain place, but to be honest, it is a lot of work. I have just a couple of minutes to eat my food as it is, and spending that time taking him back to the same spot over and over just isn't what I am generally in the mood for at 6pm. I used to crate him, but wow, he was really annoying with the crying. I have also since taken the crate down. So we deal with it. To the laundry room it is, unless his manners are working for him that day and he doesn't annoy me too much.

I feel like I should mention that no matter what brand of food, nor how much he gets, he always. wants. more. He gets almost four cups of food a day, which is more than the recommended amount on the bag, and that amount is for un-sterilized animals who have higher metabolisms. So yeah, he isn't starving. Around five o'clock, him and Kabo start to stare me down and follow me around, just so I won't forget to feed them. Not that I ever forget to feed them, OK, maybe just once.

Sam and Charlie LOVE to help feed the dogs. Charlie especially. She sees me pick up the dog bowls and she'll scream at me and cry if I don't let her put at least one of them down. She is very serious about the whole matter, s-l-o-w-l-y leaning down to put dishes in their designated spots. Since she loves to feed the dogs, I suppose it is only natural that she also loves to play in the dog food. Kale's food is in a container on the landing in our garage, which means that Charlie can just wander out there anytime she wants and attempt to pry it open. Usually she can't. The other day she could.

What followed was an experiment I had been wanting to try, but couldn't find enough excuses to do so. Charlie filled up one of the dog bowls to the very top, almost perfectly level. She then "accidentally" dumped it out onto the floor. It was probably eight or ten cups of food, and Kale heard it hit the ground. He was cautious at first, looking at me since I had let out a loud exasperated "Charlie!" when I heard the food spill. I looked at the food, then at Kale, he looked at me, then at the food, and I sighed and said, "OK." He dove.

He didn't have the same desperate drive to get all the food in his mouth as quickly as possible, especially since I think he knew I wasn't about to sweep it all up. But that damn dog ate every last kernel of dog chow that was scattered across the floor. He thoroughly checked underneath the refrigerator and obediently allowed Kabo to have a few bites when he approached, and I was so relieved that I didn't have to sweep up yet another mess.

But it just confirmed what I thought, if I accidentally left the top of the tub open, he probably would eat the whole damn thing. The first six months of Kabo's life I could barely get him to eat half of what was recommended, and even since then, he's never been so worried that he won't get fed. Kale, I guess it is just that survival instinct kicking as much as you can while it is there. Even if you know more is coming in 12 hours. I supposed that is juts one of the downfalls of being one of twelve.  

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Close Call

Today, I saved a life. Yep, I'm pretty kickass.

I stopped at the park for a few minutes over lunch since the girls were there with our nanny. This particular park is on quite a busy street. Cars go by every few seconds, if not more often. After parking, I noticed a little kid about Charlie's age and height running towards me. Since I was still pretty close to the street, I kept an eye on him as he realized that I was NOT his mom and turned to run the other way.

I kept watching him, and he kept wandering closer and closer to the street. Actually, the kid was making a beeline for it. I thought to myself, "He's going to stop, he's going to stop," (you know, because toddlers totally know to stop at the curb), but the kid was determined. I started walking his way and then had to break into a (pathetic) run to catch him before he hit the pavement.

Just after I put out my hands to stop him, a big white SUV drove past. There was no way they would have seen him, since we both were behind a car. I guess if they saw me running and put two-and-two together, but let's not bank on that.

The kid started pointing across the street and said "Mommy" and tried to get around me. Now here is where maybe I am weird. I didn't pick him up. I didn't want him to freak out on me and start screaming and draw all kinds of attention and make me look like some sort of child kidnapper. I kept trying to herd him back to the park, and after what seemed like forever, (more like 3 seconds) I look up and his mom is running. She thanked me profusely and was shaking and hugged him tight. He looked like he could give a damn about the whole situation.

At that point, I realized my heart was pounding. I'm not sure if it was from the 30 feet I had to run or the adrenaline that rushed through me when I realized what was going on. And what could have happened. We smiled at the new mom and went back to getting my kids to play on the playground.

And here's the thing. I totally get that your kid got away and you didn't know. Hell, I hope someday someone is there to stop Charlie from crossing the street before an Expedition rolls over her. I was totally NOT judging the mom, I was just happy that I was there and could help. But not 10 minutes later, while we were at the swings, I noticed the little boy again. He had wandered over and was trying to play with some little girls who had a wagon. Who were vehemently against a little boy joining in their game. And the mom was probably a good hundred feet away, in a totally different section of the playground, talking to some other moms.

I get that kids get away. Some more than others Some are hell bent on giving their parents heart attacks. But don't you think that after your kid almost got hit by a car you would keep an eye on him at least for a few minutes? He was probably by us for 5 minutes before the mom came over to get him. She had no other children with her, so I couldn't give her that break. She was just really focused on the conversation at hand with her playgroup.

Am I crazy for thinking that she maybe should have been a tad more vigilant? I know that moms should support each other, and I am all for that, and that none of us are perfect, but her toddler ran away twice, and she didn't notice for several minutes

Now that I have put it out there, I am sure that Charlie is going to run away and have to be brought home by the police before I realize she is gone. Karma is a bitch. 

Wednesday, October 24, 2012


There are lots of things I don't remember from when my babies were newborns. The first time they smiled, the first dirty diaper, the first time Charlie slept through the night.

I do however, remember the first time Sam slept through the night. I had heard all these stories from moms about how the first time their firstborn slept "through the night" (which typically means 6 hours or more), they would jerk awake and rush to see if the baby was still alive.

That didn't happen for me.

I was at my parent's house, and it was about 6:30 in the morning. I heard her cry, looked at the clock, and all I thought was, "Please, please sleep a little longer." It had been 7 1/2 hours. I should have been ecstatic, but instead I was really sleep-deprived. Luckily for me, Sam continued to sleep through the night, until about...oh...the past few months.

In those precious times, bedtime was a joyous occasion. We had a good routine with Sam, and she was pretty easy to put down. Bottle, swaddle, bed. As she got older it was bottle, books, bed. Sometimes Workaholic would put her to sleep and we would enjoy a nice, quiet couple of hours before going to sleep.

The reason I say those were joyous times is because before and after those times, bedtime is the worst time of the day. Worse even than getting up in the morning. My kids seem to save up all of their energy for after dinner, at which time they run screaming around the house, tickling and tackling each other, stealing each others toys, and generally being wild animals.We've tried to set a routine...sometimes a bath, then brush teeth, get into pajamas, read books, snuggle, sleep. Oh how we have tried.

The past few weeks have been, well...hell. Take tonight, for example. Workaholic is working, so it is just me. I give them a 20 minute warning, at which Sam protests. Charlie says, "OK!" only because I think she likes to say that word. When I announce it is time for bed, Sam starts whining and asking for things, and Charlie bolts. I chase her down, drag her into her room, and wrangle her into a diaper and PJs. I turn on the sound machine, turn down the lighting, and we read books. At least five every night. And then I tell her that we can either rock and snuggle or she can go to bed. At which she tells me no.

Eventually she wriggles out of my arms and climbs into bed. This is where the hell begins. (as if the fighting beforehand wasn't bad enough) We've gotten into a terrible routine of putting her in bed, me walking out, her getting up, me putting her back into bed. After about 15 times of this, she starts to get really upset. This isn't a game she wants to play anymore. She has figured out that I will rock her if she is insistent enough, and cries hard enough. I'm talking the can't-breathe-sobbing-pathetic cry that toddlers do that sort of break your heart. And it also sorta makes you roll your eyes because you know that they are just tired and WHY THE HELL WON'T THEY JUST GO TO SLEEP??

So I rock her, and then tell her that it is time for her to go to her bed. She goes willingly enough, and a few seconds after I walk out of the room, the crying begins again. And the getting out of bed, getting put back in bed routine starts too.This can be a cycle, I might give her more than one chance to rock and snuggle if she gets upset enough. I figure if she is crying THAT hard, there is no way she'll calm down enough to sleep. (I think I need to get a harder heart.)

Tonight, the process took and hour and half. AFTER we went into her room. AN HOUR AND A HALF PEOPLE. I could be watching valuable television, or posting witty things on facebook, or blogging for goodness sake. I could be trying to regain my sanity after a crazy day.

I am all for spending 30 minutes on a bedtime routine. But seriously, 90 minutes?? And that is just Charlie! Let's not even talk about Sam! The best part of the 90 minutes is when I came out of Charlie's room to see that Sam had fallen asleep waiting on me. In my bed, of course, but at least she was asleep. And this isn't the first time it has taken this long.

Sam's biggest complaint is that she "is not tired" and that she wants to sleep with us. Yes, we have caved more than I would like to admit and let her sleep with us. It started out as a necessity of staying in beds that weren't ours. Then it turned into her begging every night. And if she doesn't get her way (yes, we do say no most of the time), then she will often get up at 4 or 5 in the morning and want to come in and "snuggle" with me. (read:push up against me until I fall out of the bed)

So not only am I not getting my alone time at night, but I am getting woken up almost every night by at least one, if not both kids. I'm not sure how to handle this. I need my sleep. I NEED MY SLEEP. They don't get sugar or juice at night, and I am limiting how much they watch the iPad and TV. It doesn't seem to be helping.

Does anyone have any other suggestions? I just don't have it in me to fight both kids at night and it seems ridiculous that I have to. Maybe this is just karma being a bitch.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Fall. No...Autumn!

The leaves are changing and falling off of the trees. The air is crisp, the wind cool, the rain cold. The days are shorter and it seems as though a lot more of them are cloudy days. I used to hatehatehate this time of year.

When I was little, I lovedlovedloved it. I "helped" rake the two billion leaves that fell in our yard from the giant oak trees that surrounded our house. I warmed myself by the fire when we burned them, or helped my dad drag the tarp loaded up with wet leaves to dump "over the hill." (only Woodcliff Acres residents will understand that) We carved pumpkins for Halloween and went trick-or-treating in the dark. I was a kid, and it was awesome.

A few years ago, I wrote an essay in my hometown newspaper about driving up a certain hill at a certain time of year, and how it would just take my breath away. The myriad of colors in the trees surrounding the river would brighten even my darkest day. That hill, those colors, they mean home to me.

But somewhere along the way, I started to dislike fall. All it meant to me is that the leaves would fall off the trees and there would be barren emptyness for the next 6 months. The promise of snow usually wasn't enough to pull me out of my funk, for there was far too little and far too much time inbetween. It would be too cold and too dark to go to the park after work, or even go for a walk down the street. Mornings were darker, harder to get out of bed, and cooold.

A couple of years ago, I realized that I really, really hated fall.

My neighbor loves all holidays. LOVES. I mean, she even decorates for Valentines Day. But fall and Christmas decorations are by far her favorite. As I admired her bales of straw and colorful mums and the adorable pumpkin arrangements that she and many other people set in front of their homes, I admonished myself for not decorating. I chided myself for being a lazy homemaker. But it always seemed just too overwhelming. I told myself that "next year" I would purchase corn stalks and gourds. "Next year", I would put up Christmas lights. Next year, next year, next year.

But I am on medication now. Better medication for me. I have started a gratitude journal. Do you know what that is? Every day, you write down 5 things that you are grateful for. Every day. And you can't. ever. repeat. Like, ever. The very first thing I wrote that I was grateful for was trees whose leaves turn red in the fall, and not just brown and fall off. It really is the little things in life that are the big things.

For the longest time, I thought that my kids were supposed to "provide" me with those little things. But now I know that I am supposed to provide the little things. I am the one who has to notice the beauty of the trees, the refreshing crispness of the air, the way Kabo loves to sit outside for hours because it is so comfortable for him. I am the one who makes decorations happen, no matter how little or extravagant. And then I get to admire the decorations as an accomplishment for myself and an addition to the neighborhood.

And with that, all of the sudden, my kids are more adorable, more precious, and even funnier to me. Their excitement is invigorating. It reminds me of my youth and makes me excited to make memories for my children. (I seriously cannot wait until the girls are big enough to rake leaves. That job really sucks!) 

By taking notice of the trees with red leaves, instead of the ones whose leaves have already fallen off and are bare, I am slowly, ever so slowly, starting to think positive. No longer do I dread the -20 degree days. Instead I look forward to hot chocolate by the fire. No longer do I dread the hustle and bustle of Christmas, instead I think of all the great deals I will get shopping online! Instead of thinking that I will continue to gain weight and be unhealthy for the rest of my life, I know that if I continue to make little changes, one day I will lose weight and enjoy the effects of *shudder* exercise. (Obviously, that day isn't quite here yet.)

For now, I am definitely enjoying seeing MY bales of straw, corn stalks, mums, and little-girl arranged pumpkins every time I pull into my driveway. (And Indian corn! Who can forget the Indian corn!) I am excited for Sam's field trip to the pumpkin patch tomorrow. I just know that the next 3 months are going to be better than they have been in a long time.

It's not much, but it is huge for me.

Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Respect My Right to Rant

I was all set to you give you folks a lovely post about sunshine and lollipops, but then the debate happened last night. More specifically, the comments on facebook and twitter happened last night. And so fuck it, I've got shit to say, and I haven't had a good rant on here in a damn long time.

This is a point where I'd like to tell anyone who is offended by profanity or bluntness to either brace yourself, or click that little red X on the top right hand corner of your screen.

This is also the point where I should mention that I know little about most issues. I know pretty much what the major news outlets tell me, and by that, I mean the networks of NBC. I can't help it, it's just the channel I watch the most. I have not made up my mind who to vote for, and honestly, that isn't anybody's business. I just know that there is no one person out there who represents everything I believe in, so I have to pick the next best thing. (Me being the best, obviously.) And I am not trying to start a political debate, I am more pissed off by the assholes out there putting words in each candidates mouths and completely skewing what they said.

So I watched about 10 minutes of the debate. I saw a woman stand up and ask about AK47s, and what was the plan to do about them.

President Obama stood up and gave a nice speech about enforcing the laws already on the books but also protecting the 2nd Amendment. 1 point for Obama.

Gov. Romney stood up and said many of the same things that Obama did. They seemed to agree on this issue. And then he went into how the reason for gun violence and murders is the degradation of society. And we need to fix that, and one of ways to do that is to strengthen the family unit. 1 point for Romney.

And then I went on Twitter, and someone said, "I missed the debate and just heard someone say that Romney said that single moms are responsible for gun violence?"

Are you seriously kidding me? Way to put a fucking spin on it, mysterious someone.

No, Romney said in the nicest possible way that the fundamental family unit in the United States has been breaking down for a long time. And with that breakdown, morals and values are lost.

Studies prove (I think) that a two parent household (on average) is optimal for children. (And I personally don't give a shit if it is two parents of the same long as they are two people who are invested in raising productive citizens. Did you see the kid from Iowa give a speech on gay marriage in the Iowa House of Representative?) So what Romney is saying is that more people need to be in committed relationships (like him and Obama and, you know, Ellen) when choosing to have children, so they have help in instilling morals and values and all the good shit parents are supposed to teach their kids. 

I am not saying that single mothers aren't fantastic. They are fucking superheros, in my opinion. But I also bet that those same single mothers would say that it is really fucking hard to raise kids by yourself and it just isn't possible to be everything to everyone. There isn't enough time in the day nor enough energy in one human to do that. And if they had the option to have a partner in raising those kids, someone responsible and moral to help financially and emotionally and logistically, those single mothers would jump at the chance. Because being a superhero is fucking exhausting and they just want what is best for their kids.

There may be some people out there (I don't know where) who deny the breakdown of society. They might think that we are advancing and being more open-minded and politically correct and all that bullshit. Here is the thing. Morals and values. I'm not talking about your stance on gay marriage or abortion or welfare or tax cuts. I'm talking about the Golden Rule..."Do unto others as you would have them done unto you." And if you have really low self-esteem, another good moral is to simply respect the life, liberty, and property of others.

Respect. Why can't we fucking respect one another?

I remember being in middle or high school the first time I heard the phrase, "Respect isn't something that is given, it is earned." I was like, "Oohhh...yeah. Totally."

And you know what? That phrase is bullshit. It was made up by someone who probably had a lot of people beat them down in life. And I'm sorry about that. But the number one moral that kids should be learning nowadays is that everyone deserves respect. 

I was going to say that until a person does something to lose your respect, then it is OK to do whatever. And then I realized that is bullshit too. Just because someone pisses you off doesn't give you the right to pull out a handgun and shoot them. Even if you have a permit for the gun. I guess as Jesus said, "Turn the other cheek." Or as my father-in-law would say, "Be the better person."

If all people in all societies would treat each other with respect, there would be a lot less war. A lot less murders. A lot less rapes. And I bet a lot less divorce. No one should be treated like shit just because. Because they are white, or black, or gay, or straight, or Catholic, or Jewish, or an illegal immigrant, or really old and driving below the speed limit on the interstate.

Have respect for others. Have compassion for others. Treat others as you would want to be treated. It may not be as fun as mocking someone behind their back or telling someone else to fuck off, but it really is better for all of humanity in the long run. This isn't a new concept. (See Jesus quote above.) But it seems more and more people believe the "Respect is not given, it is earned" quote, as opposed to believing in following the Golden Rule. And no one seems to like where this country is headed, so why not try something different?

So to all those assholes who are skewing every word that comes out of the candidates mouths...STOP IT! Seriously, just tell me what I need to know about each guy's stance on each issue, and quit going for ratings. Otherwise we are just going in circles, like a dog chasing his tail.The dog is getting older, and before you know it, he'll be dying and everyone will be like, "Shit, what happened to the United States, the most powerful country in the world?" 

Fucking Respect. That's all it takes. 

End rant.

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

About Me

Did you guys know there is an About Me section?

It's a place where you get to know all kinds of random details and I get to talk about myself!

I updated it last night, so check it out...yit is at the top of the page, right in the middle, and is a link that says, About Me. You just might be more like me than what you think. Or not.

Monday, October 15, 2012

Little Girl-isms

Sam has always been a talker. Charlie...not so much. Well, she likes to talk a whole lot, in French. Or something else that we just do not understand.

The other day, while at the park, Sam fell running on a piece of playground equipment. She whacked her head on a metal bar in the process. When asked if she was OK, her response was, "Yeah. If I would just watch where I am going, things like that wouldn't happen!" OK...way to give yourself a lecture.

While forcing the girls to clean the playroom last week, Sam was literally walking in circles talking to her "friend" on an old cell phone. Which we seem to have in abundance in our house. When I told her to get off of the phone and help clean, she said, "MOM! Sshh! I'm talking on the phone!" And ran out of the room. Where I had to chase her down and rip the phone from her clenched little fist while she fought me and then threw a crying fit. SHE IS THREE.

Everytime Sam gets in our nanny's car, she goes on and on...
"Your car is so much smaller than our car. And you don't have a TV in your car like we do, because we are lucky."

"I've had a rough day."

"Mom, I can do it because I'm bigger than Charlie. I'm the big sister."

"Mom, Charlie is crabby today. I think we need to get her to bed early tonight."

Actually, just think of anything that a teacher would say to her students or a mom would say to her children, put it in a squeaky little girls voice, and you have it...a Sam-ism.

As far as Charlie goes...well, let's just say that she is a little more stubborn and defiant than her generally well behaved older sister. Some of her favorite phrases...



Mm-hmm.(Instead of saying Yes, she says this in the cutest little girl voice ever.)

Beep-Beep Kale! or Beep-Beep Kabo! (just depends on who is in her way)

Soo-kee (her way of saying our new nanny's name)




Mo-om...I wanna watch George!

I wanna go potty. (usually said either after she has peed in her diaper or while I am trying to get her ready for bed)

I wanna brush  my teeth! Followed shortly by, "I want a vitamin!" (Flintstones really are the best, aren't they? I remember as a kid sneak-eating them, and way more than one a day.)

She is also one of those kids who thinks that if told no, then she has a better chance of getting what she wants if she just ASKS FOR IT LOUDER. Which, you know, totally works.

Fortunately for me, both girls have sort of potty-trained themselves. It is not an overnight process, or even a three day process. One day, Charlie just ran and peed in the potty all by herself. Then she started taking her diapers off because she just couldn't stand them after she peed in them. (Sometimes, not all the time. Which is why I am not pushing the potty training thing.) After she peed on the floor a couple of times, I started taking her to the bathroom about once an hour. Which actually works great. (It doesn't work great when daddy is in charge, and the timing is not quite right, and suddenly Kale is being accused of peeing on the carpet.) I've heard that potty-training girls is way easier than boys, and I totally get it. Sam was super motivated once she made up her mind, and Charlie likes to be just like her big sister. I just don't understand why she doesn't give herself lectures when she misbehaves.

Tuesday, October 9, 2012

Old Man

I didn't even get a chance to write Kabo's 13th birthday post. (no he isn't dead)

He turned 13 on September 21st, and he had his own little birthday cake and Kale had a donut. They loved it. I think even Sampson got to join in on the feast.

The nights in Michigan have been getting cool. Its like someone flips a switch on Labor Day and cold air moves in and the leaves start to turn their brilliant colors of red, orange and yellow. Septembers are always hard for me, the rapidly changing light, the hot-then-cold weather, the changing leaves...which means barren winter is ahead of us. I like green. I like color. I don't like brown trees with no leaves and naked branches stretched to the sky.

Since the nights have gotten cooler, Kabo has decided that he likes to be outside. Especially at night. For hours at a time.

One night the last week in September, he had been out for quite a while and then he knocked on the door to be let in. I don't even know who let him in, probably Sam. After a minute or so, Workaholic says, "Hey, what is wrong with Kabo's eye?"

I look up and sure enough, there is something there. I figured it was mud from rolling around like a puppy in the grass. He was just standing in the living room, looking at us, like "Hey, I'm tired."

As we got closer, I realized it was more of a "Hey, I'm hurt" look. He had somehow, in his nightly wandering, managed to cut just above his eye. Actually, he sliced his eyebrow. It was about an inch long and an inch deep into his forehead. It didn't bleed a lot, but there was definite cause to go to the vet. Not the emergency vet. I will only go there if I think my animal is dying, like, right now. And since my animal just looked like he'd been in a bar fight, I figured he could wait a day.

We go to bed and the next day he is seen. And sure enough, it needs stitches. Do you know anything about dogs getting stitches? By their eye? It requires them to be put under. Fan-fucking-tastic. While he is under, I consent to x-rays to see if he has arthritis in his hind end, since his control of his back legs has gotten a bit worse. I was pretty sure I had gotten these x-rays before, but really couldn't remember. (Yes, yes I have gotten them done before.)

So he gets to have "emergency surgery", which just means unplanned and immediately necessary. The vet calls me that night after 8pm to let me know he was OK and awake and I convinced her to keep him overnight. Two kids and a cat and another dog in one house does not exactly make the best environment for recuperation.

I get him the next day and he looks like an honest-to-God pirate. With an Elizabethan collar on his head. (we just covering all time periods here) He is a little down, but shows absolutely no symptoms of pain, unless lethargy is his way of saying "Ouch, I'm hurt."

I get his prescriptions and go over his after care, and confirm once again that yes, he has no arthritis in his hind end, the loss of function in his back legs is neurological and will get worse, rather than better. Fan-fucking-tastic.

I go to pay the bill and it is literally hundreds of dollars. Which I happily paid, seeing as how the office got me right in and took care of him well and basically did everything I asked. I was surprised by the amount though. It just seemed like a lot of money for a random cut over his eye. OK, slice. Slice over his eye. And no, WE HAVE NO IDEA WHAT HAPPENED. (that was for you, dear sister)

What is the point to this kind of random story, you ask?

If you get a dog, and are planning on it living a long, healthy life, get pet insurance on him when he is a puppy. The first 7 or 10 years of his life you may feel as though you are throwing money out the door every time you pay the bill. But one incident will probably make up for those years of paying for insurance. (It'd be way too expensive to buy it for him now.)

Vets are DOCTORS. Which means they went to school for years and years and fought for one of the few spots at a prestigious veterinary school and then incurred thousands upon thousands of dollars in student loans. They have intimate knowledge on several species of animals, get paid much less than what you would think, and have to deal with many, many clients who have to make (literally) life and death decisions about members of their family...based on finances. I LOVE VETS. I just really, really wish I had splurged on pet insurance when Kabo was younger.

But at least my old-man/pirate-who-got-into-a-bar-fight is OK. And back to his disappearing ways. (this was one day post-surgery, he is much happier now that the cone is off!)