Thursday, December 3, 2015

The dog that shall not be named

On Sunday morning, Bill went out to start the car to let it warm up. While he was out there, he saw a dog under the neighbor's truck. Bill looked at the dog and the dog looked at Bill, and the dog growled. Bill told the dog, "It's okay, I don't want anything to do with you". Then the dog took a few steps closer.

Bill looked at the dog and the dog looked at Bill, and the dog growled again. Bill told the dog, "It's okay, I don't want anything to do with you". Then the dog took a few steps closer.

Once again, Bill looked at the dog and the dog looked at Bill, and the dog growled again. Bill repeated, "It's okay, I don't want anything to do with you". Then the dog took a few steps closer.

I should stop here and say that Bill loves animals and has been begging for a dog for a few years now. I don't mind dogs, but our cats are not fond of dogs. If we get a dog, I would prefer only having a dog and not having any cats. So, at this time in our lives, I do not want a dog. Not to mention that you can't just leave a dog for a weekend like you can cats.

I would also like to point out that as a child, Bill was bitten by a dog. Severely enough that he had to have stitches. As a result, Bill is a little hesitant around growling dogs (as everyone should be).

Back to the growling dog on the street, by this time Bill realized the dog was just a puppy and was cold and scared. The dog did not have a collar. Bill talked to the dog and reassured the dog. Then Bill noticed how skinny the dog was. Bill decided he should at least try to give the dog some water. When Bill came in to get the water, I looked out the window (in time to see the dog putting its paws on Bill's car) to check to see if I recognized the dog. I did not. When Bill took the water out to the dog, the dog came up to the house. It was very clear that this dog was hungry, cold, and scared.

Bill and I had a quick conversation, in which we agreed the dog should at least come inside to be warm while we looked for his owner.

We posted the dog's picture on each of our Facebook pages, on our local neighborhood FB pages, the GR Police FB page, and on "For the Love of Louie" FB page (for lost & found dogs). Friends reposted the dog's picture. We were sure if someone was looking for this sweet puppy, we would connect with them.

Bill walked the dog up and down our street, two other streets, to the mailbox, to the store, and back. We asked our neighbors who have dogs if they recognized him from the park. No one had ever seen this dog before.

By Sunday evening, we started to realize that perhaps no one was going to claim this dog. Bill had taken Dog (that's what we started calling him) to the animal hospital where they checked for a microchip (he was not chipped).

While Dog is very sweet, and very cute, the cats weren't having any of it. They were self-quarentined to our bedroom. Atticus was angry with Bill (so much so that when we went to bed that night and Bill tried to pet Atticus, Atticus turned around, jumped off the bed, and hid under it all night). Bill stacked up three Christmas totes on the stairs to keep Dog downstairs (the first attempt used two totes, but Dog is very athletic and jumped right over those).

We both knew we couldn't keep Dog. We just weren't prepared to have a dog, let alone another pet in the house.

On Monday morning, I made a flyer to hang in the break-room. I couldn't remember if I needed permission to hang it, and I could have waited until Melanie arrived to ask her. Instead, I had a nudge to go ask Sara. There are several other people I could have asked, but Sara kept coming to mind. So I took my poster down to Sara's office and held it up. I asked if I needed permission to hang it and she said, "No. That's a really cute dog. We're thinking of getting a dog."

That was my cue to sit down and tell her how we came about housing Dog and why we couldn't keep him and how sweet he is. I didn't hide the fact that he would need to be neutered. She said she would have to talk to her husband and in the meantime I could hang the flyer in the break room. I also told her I would send her the pictures of Dog so she could send them to her husband.

About an hour later, Sara stopped by my desk. She asked if it would be possible if she could bring her family over to meet Dog later that night? I asked her if I should take down the flyer and she said yes.

When I got home, I took Dog with me on my run. He showed me how not-in-shape I am. He is fast. I am slow. He is very well-behaved though; he didn't stop to smell every tree. He did try to drag me along to chase a squirrel, but fortunately I saw the squirrel and held my footing.

That night, Dog met his new family. He warmed up to Sara first, then her kids. Since Dog had become pretty attached to Bill, Dog took a little longer to warm up to Daniel (Sara's husband). But pretty soon, "Can we keep him, please?" came out of the mouths of the children, who were sitting in front of our [half-decorated] Christmas tree.

It was a scene straight out of a Christmas movie.

Sara and her family collected the dog food, dog biscuit, rawhide, and leash and Dog followed them, happily out of house and into theirs. He hopped right into their car. He never looked back.

That is the story of the dog that shall not be named who is now called Kipper.

And also how I may, in the future after our cats have used up their nine lives, think about the possibility of getting a dog.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

But wait, there's more!

I know. It has been a long time since I blogged. Time flies, it was summer, I've been busy.

All three are true. But it's the last excuse that I'm sticking with and I'll explain why.

Some of you know we had an exciting day last winter when our pipes not only froze, but the pipe to the half bath toilet finally burst. While there was no major damage, unless you count the mice that were out a warm comfy home and a very happy cat, we did decide it was high time we replaced the original plumbing in our almost-one hundred year-old house.
(This photo is not the result of the burst pipe, this was the "during" photo)

That happened in May. The plumbers came in and not only put in new pipes from the city main all throughout our house, but they did the gas lines too! It was a thing of beauty. Bill and I ooh-ed and aah-ed. If you are a home-owner, you may understand our awe. The best part was that the plumbers were able to go through the kitchen ceiling. Bill and I agreed that was better than the alternative of going through the bathroom floor.

However, that meant we would have to replace the ceiling in the kitchen. But that was still a good thing because we had a drop ceiling that was covering damaged plaster.
(This is a close-up of the plumbing, I told you, I took a lot of photos.)

It was then that we realized we had a minor electrical snag. As in the electrical on the second floor had been updated, but the first floor had not. So we called an electrician who got us on the calendar for the beginning of August.

And so we waited.

We took down the rest of the plaster ceiling while we waited.

Eventually August arrived and so did the electrician. It took him a week (and a half) but he finally got us rewired.

Then the fun began.

First, we had a bat that made a bad decision. We both still have a little PTSD over it, so ask us about it and you'll hear a very animated, entirely 100% true version of the night of the bat invasion and how we removed it safely from our home.

Over Labor Day weekend, we borrowed a friend's pick-up truck, bought new drywall and all the other supplies we would need (except we didn't because who, during any home project no matter how extensive a list you make, purchases everything you need on the first trip), and went home and hung (hanged?) a brand-new drywall ceiling in our 8'-6" first floor. This is three inches taller than before when we had the drop ceiling.
And then we went back to the store to buy a few extra things.

The following day was full of taping, mudding, and patching.
Followed by sanding and more mudding, and more patching.

Followed by sanding.

Then came time to paint. First the ceiling, then the walls.

Bill had to go out of town, so we had planned it out that the ceiling would be ready for paint before he left. I was able to prime it and paint it while he was gone. When he returned, we picked out the wall color and painted the town red. Oh no, wait. We didn't paint it red, but we did get the walls painted.
Here's the ceiling.
Here's a taste of the wall color.

We had been discussing what to do with the floors. They're hardwood throughout the first floor, but in the kitchen there have been a few poorly done patch jobs. Not to mention the finish was completely worn off in several spots. If we refinished the wood, it would have to be the entire first floor because just doing the kitchen wouldn't be right. But since we have a future goal of re-doing the kitchen (new cabinets, new layout, etc), we decided to do this.
To achieve this look, first we primed, then painted the floor white.
Then I measured and taped off squares, like this.

Then, on went the black paint and we have a very mid-century retro kitchen floor. My knees are finally recovering.

But wait, shouldn't we do something with the cabinet hardware?

That meant another trip to the store to buy some black paint. Bill removed and sanded thirty-some (he knows the exact number) hinges, plus handles, and all the screws to the cabinets. I know, for such a small kitchen, it sure seemed like a lot.

The final results look like this:

And for a closer view of the new curtains...
They fit the retro feeling we're going for. I need to do some tweaking with the knick-knacks (the heart hanging from the window in this picture doesn't exactly "go" with the modern look), besides the little details, we are enjoying it.

Sunday, April 5, 2015


The time has come for us to go out and bring peace to everyone.

Where you go and what you do is your choice. But in order to make the world a better place, wouldn't it be nice if we each took the time to share peace? And not just share it with those we know and love, but to share peace with those we don't know.

It's not always easy. In fact, most days it's a pretty big challenge for the average person, but we have to try. We have to go and do. Sitting here, complacent, will do nothing and things will continue to degrade.

Go is my benediction for this journey. It's not the end, it's the sending forth with a mission. Go and reach out to help each other. Go and love one another. Go back and read each word from the last forty days and insert it after, "go…"

Go on, what are you waiting for?

Saturday, April 4, 2015


For me, going to my parents house is a refuge.

Until we play euchre. Then it's more like a stronghold.

Going back home to our house is also a refuge.

Our church is another place of refuge.

Campgrounds are always a place of refuge. The only exception is the one down in southern Indiana that used to be part of a mental facility. The large living quarters were still there and it was creepy. That place was not a refuge for me.

Where do you find refuge?

Friday, April 3, 2015


I suppose writing this blog should help me prosper in many ways.

Perhaps make me a better writer.

Or teach me patience.

I could make money and prosper through advertising. Perhaps that would help my blog viewership prosper too.

How much do we prosper in our lives? What is worth living for?

I know that I look for joy, finding ways to help others to the best of my ability. That is how I look to prosper.