Sunday, March 19, 2017

bangin' hot

Thank you everyone, for the comforting comments and thoughts regarding China's passing.  We miss her, of course, and are now dogless for the first time in many years.  I think the cat's been looking for her and wondering why we're not going for walks with her at  night.  The cat used to walk with us, he's kind of a weird cat that way...

Yesterday, Magnum and I went to Littleton (suburb of Denver) for Meego's winter percussion regional competition.  The group made a fine showing, finishing second out of eight in their class.  I tested my winter percussion judging ability and I managed to have a few of my picks agree with the judges, including first and second place.

Our group did a good job, but after the first place group went, I was feeling that Meego and company had been edged out.  I'm no winter percussion expert, but that first place group had a cowbell, among other things, and they knew how to use it.  And we all know the importance of More Cowbell.

On a side note, four of the winter percussionists in Meego's group went bald 4 bucks, three of them are girls.  Can  you spot 'em in my blurry photo?

It was record breaking warm yesterday, and Magnum and I decided to take advantage of the new location to hunt down some geocaches.  The camouflage on this  one didn't fool anyone - it was  hidden in an evergreen - but I appreciate the effort.

It was nice to enjoy the outdoors, but too  hot for black long sleeves.  Is it really still March?  I had to shed the long sleeves in order to not keel over from the heat.

And this morning, I went running in shorts and a tank top!  Simple pleasures.  I came upon two deer, who eyed me suspiciously but were not alarmed enough to run either into the road or into me, thank goodness.

So I'm ready for spring and glad we had China for the winter, her favorite season.  We'll get another dog eventually, but need to miss China a bit more before then.

Wednesday, March 15, 2017

the sad sadness

The inevitable happened today.  We helped China go to dog heaven.

I'm actually quite surprised she made it this long after being diagnosed with liver problems in early 2016, but she was a tough old girl.  She clocked in at somewhere between 16 and 17 years old.

She'd really been declining the last couple of weeks, could barely walk and just didn't seem happy anymore.  I found a veterinarian who does in-home euthanasia, and I'd say it was the next best thing to her going naturally and peacefully in her sleep.

Chaco and Wolfgang came over yesterday to say their goodbyes, and Magnum and Meego gave theirs this morning before heading off to work and school.  Truthfully, I was a bit anxious about being the lone accompanier, but on the other hand, no way was she going without me being there.

Happily, Chaco showed up about an hour before the appointed time.  After a meeting at work, he told them where he was going, and the boss and coworkers understood.

The vet was a nice balance of medical professional and sympathetic dog lover.  He gave China a quick once over and agreed it was time.

It's almost like she knew.  When Magnum and I took her outside last night for her last slow, short walk, she seemed to linger longer than she had been lingering lately.  Sniffing more things on the ground, taking in the night sky a little longer.  A few last things to remember her time on earth by, I guess.

Rest in Peace, sweet pooch, free from that old worn out body.  I hope she's running again and rolling in all kinds of awful smelling things.

Friday, March 10, 2017

at least it wasn't a pizza

Last weekend, I ordered a pair of shooz from Brooks.  They were shipped via FedEx and arrived on Wednesday:

See the cat back there?  Yes, he's laughing.

I'm curious what the FedEx driver thought as he plopped placed the crumpled package on our porch.

"How embarrassing, this package is all smashed up...", or

"Is it 4:20 yet??"

I think the shooz were adequately packaged from the Brooks end.  A thick cardboard box secured the inner box that secured the shooz.  Works for me.

Thankfully, these were just shooz, meant to take a bit of a beating, so the actual product was unharmed.  

On Tuesday, I ordered a book I needed for a tutee.  It was shipped via FedEx and guaranteed to arrive by yesterday.

It is now today. This is what has arrived.  

Actually, I have no image available because the book is floating around out there somewhere nowhere near me.

Thankfully, the bookstore located about a mile from our house had copies of the book, so I was able to get it in time for tuting, just not at the lower online price.    If and when the original order arrives, I'll have the pleasure of returning it because I needed it Thursday and we have now entered Friday and beyond.

Meego was home when the shooz arrived and I brought in the crumpled box.  He laughed even a bit louder than the cat did as I just stood perplexedly staring.  

He wasn't really surprised, and asked, "Haven't you seen that youtube video about FedEx?"  

But yesterday, we got a little ray of sunshine.  A cute little intact package arrived, this time for Wolfgang:

No dings, no dents, no crumples.  I believe it's a raspberry pi.  Even well in time for pi day. Delivered via UPS.

I'm wondering if FedEx drivers are sabotageful UPS drivers in disguise?


Linking up with Mama Kat for the prompt:
1. Something that made you smile this week.

Sunday, March 5, 2017

it's a wrap

... not a rap.  I think I tried that once on the blog, it was quite bad.

This was a pretty good week.  I recently read a tip in a book, regarding journaling.  The tip was to not think, "what happened?" but rather to think "what happened that was good?".  It noted that many of us typically focus on the bad stuff, the fails and/or embarrassing things, etc. So, okay, putting on my rose colored glasses...

Honestly, it was a pretty good week.  Busy, but not too.  The weather was very springlike - except for that sloppy snow storm - and I'm reveling in the sunshine.

On a related note, my lame-o foot has been feeling increasingly better since I went to that foot chiropractor.  I've started doing short bits of running.  It feels quite awkward since it's been a good five months since I've done any appreciable runs.  Really, this is what I feel like...

The running parts are a bit rusty.  But it's not like I haven't been doing any other forms of exercise in the interim...

Whatever.  I'll take what I can get.  In other news, Meego's hair has about doubled in length from last week - which isn't saying a whole lot.  He still feels the breeze on his head rather than through his hair.  I haven't heard any updates on the latest total amount earned for bald 4 bucks, but the event was another great success.

We wrapped up another fiscal PEO year, then started the next one about a second later.  They've elected me president for another term, which wasn't a big surprise, but it's nice to get the vote of confidence, a.k.a. acknowledgement that no one else particularly wants to do it.  

We snapped a pic of the new officers for the newsletter, then realized that one of us was missing because she was out sick, so we'll have to wait until next time for a more "official" officer pic.  But I kinda get a kick out of this one with the man-on-the wall photobomb.

In other other news, a friend who is single and childless and teaches high school (so has summers off) is looking for a travel companion for an exotic trip to China in a few months.  It's sounds amazing, but I don't know if I can quite pull that off for my needed adventure.  Fun to think about, though!

Thursday, March 2, 2017


It's a cutthroat, violent, aggressive sport.  It's a wonder it's not been banned.  Why were young formative children allowed to - EXPECTED to - participate?!

I knew nothing of its tragic effects until I got that phone call, THAT call.  It was a crisp February morning:


"Hi Mrs. Abby.  It's the elementary school.  Your son Chaco was hurt in P.E. this morning.  He's in with the school nurse..."

I raced to the school (after I finished my coffee and combed my hair a little bit and stuff...)

Sure enough, there was Chaco, holding his right arm, the nurse at his side saying, "Yeah, he should probably get that checked".

As we were leaving, the P.E. teacher, Mr. Steve, appeared, all anxious.

"How's he doing?!  I don't know what happened!  This has never happened before!  *No one's ever broken a bone in my class!"

I glared at him with a mother's scorn.  By then, I'd heard what had happened.  Those sweet little 5th graders were hauled down to the gym from the comfort of their warm, loving classroom and thrown upon a brutal battlefield.  No tolerance for the meek, and no security for the aggressive.

Pillow Polo
.  It was freaking pillow polo.

Bloody carnage waiting to happen.  Look away.

Is it any wonder Chaco broke his wrist?!  Especially considering that just a couple of days prior, he "fell up" the back yard stairs and noted lasting tenderness in his wrist, which probably warranted my writing a note to excuse him from P.E.??

But then if I'd done that, Chaco wouldn't have gotten that cool cast, and Mr. Steve couldn't have anxiously and temporarily taken credit for it.

*I've since learned that that was not true, but Mr. Steve didn't know me that well yet then, and was probably worried I would sue and drag him though the mud*


Linking up with Mama Kat again this week for the prompt:
5. Throwback Thursday: Choose a photo from a previous February and write a poem or a blog post.

Tuesday, February 28, 2017

I can see clearly... now

"I need an adventure..." - the last text I sent.

I was out today and happened to be riding Bella the bike when I got a text from Wolfgang.  He told me about a trip he and a couple of friends are planning for a couple of months from now.  Sounds like fun.  For those guys.

And it reminded me how much I would just LURV to get away.

Remember how the family took a trip to sunny California while I stayed here to freeze and keep the geriatric dog company?  I'm not complaining, it was my choice, I'm glad they went and saw and did the things they did.  They said they missed having me along.  They brought me back a t-shirt...

But it doesn't delete the fact that I feel overripe for a getaway.  When was my last one?  I don't even know!

In the meantime, I took advantage of a relatively nice day today.  I haven't gotten in much bike riding lately.  Mostly because of the weather. We haven't had a whole lot of snow, but it's just been a really windy blustery few months, and windy blustery takes the fun out of bicycling.

Today looked good, though.  Relative calm.  A bit on the chilly side, but that's what outerwear is for.  Plus, I had no tuting assignments today and felt deserving.  So after doing a bit of morning housewifery, I got Bella and me all ready for a joyride "just because". No deadlines or need-to-be's.  Just ride around for the fun of it, like when we were kids.

And it was wonderful and invigorating and fresh and crisp and just what I needed...  For about 90% of it.

At one point, I remember looking to the north sky and thinking, "Those are some really dark clouds, glad I'm not under them".

Well, they must've heard me and came over to make fun of me.

Suddenly, the bright crisp day turned dark and sloppy.  Huge, wet snowflakes began hitting me.  At the beginning, it was actually still quite fun.

I snapped this selfie just before I crossed over into probable legal blindness.

The big sloppy snowflakes smacked into and clung onto my geeky bicycling glasses.  As soon as I'd swipe them somewhat clean, they'd get re-smacked upon.

At one point, as I took them off to give them a (totally ineffective) better cleaning, I realized I could see fifty times better without the glasses.  Anyone who knows how bad my eyesight is will know that's not a good sign.

But I wore the glasses anyway to keep the big sloppy snowflakes from smacking into my eyeballs.

Eventually, it tapered off some.  The big sloppy snowflakes turned into just little wet ones.  The storm moved on through, and the sun reappeared about 5 minutes after I got home.


I still need a getaway adventure.  I'm not counting that one.

Sunday, February 26, 2017

tutin', shavin', laughin'

Another busy week is in the books.  Had some P.E.O., had some tutin', had some job huntin', but not too much of any one thing, so it's all good.  I've taken on more tutor students and have accepted that that's still my job for now...

Friday was also the culmination of the Bald 4 Bucks effort at Meego's school.  The event has really grown over the years.  This year, they'd counted $50,000 raised with still lots more coming in.  The goal was $75,000, and looks like they're going to make it!

Meego somehow made it into the local 5 o'clock newsreel.  That be him with half a shaved head...

I did get a "before" shot just before he left for school, and the "after" later that evening.


It's just nice to see a buncha kids organize such a thing and then also make the symbolic gesture of shaving their heads.  I especially admire all the girl students and women teachers- mostly ALL of them - who get shaved. The teachers come up with fun and creative ways to get students to donate to their tills.

So now Meego's head feels like a big round cat's tongue.

Speaking of which, the mystery stray cat?  Meego and I were both willing to give it a try, but Magnum was the party pooper logical voice of reason, noting the high likelihood of our current cat having a major cow with another cat moving in.  After all, the reason we got him was because he was evicted for beating up his previous housemate on a daily basis.

In movie news, we watched I Don't Feel at Home in This World Anymore.  OMG, what a ride!  It's funny, and violent, and hilarious, and dark, and romantic, and funny, and sad, and spooky, and hilarious!  How they managed to get all those things into a 93-minute movie, I don't know!  I wouldn't be surprised if drugs were involved.

Anyway, we really liked it.  It's streaming on Netflix now.  Not for everyone, I'm sure, but I gave it five stars.  Plus, Elijah Wood's character is adorable in this.  He's quirky and socially awkward - probably has Asperger's.  Like I said - adorable!

Your week in three words?  GO!