30 May 2006

worried parents

Finn woke us up last night with a coughing attack that lasted a good ten minutes. He had us both very concerned. I had just located our local 24-hour animal health clinic's phone number in the yellow pages when he expelled a tiny chunk of kibble. He started behaving normally after that, biting and playing...mostly biting. Argh. We go to the vet again today for shots, we'll be sure to ask about the biting (I should post a photo of my scratched and punctured hands), and also enquire about dangerous plants in the back yard.

That's the other thing we did over the weekend: bought $200 worth of plants for the back yard and started planting them. We have a gigantic Japanese maple that shades a good portion of the yard, so shade-tolerance is a must for these plants. So we went with regional natives: salal and sword fern. We also got several different plants for the rock wall in the front yard (the sick cottoneaster has to go). And a blueberry bush for me. Yay.

25 May 2006

terrible twos

Finn is now two months old and we've had him for two weeks. And he won't stop biting. When we try to coax him into chewing on one of his numerous toys, he goes around them completely and chomps on our hand or arm....or nose. No serious wounds yet. Our light at the end of the tunnel is that he'll soon be loosing his puppy teeth. And his testicles.

17 May 2006

mouthing off

Finn has decided that fingers, arms, noses and hair taste pretty good, and he seems to prefer mine over Eric's. We're trying to teach him "no bite" by hiding our hands behind our backs when he goes for them (though that doesn't stop him from lunging for our shoulders), and immediately giving him a proper chewing toy, but it is slow going.
Yesterday I brought home an O-shaped rawhide toy, which he took to immediately (he doesn't like any of the toys that are rubbery-tasting or smelling (kong, rubber dumbell, tennis balls), just fuzzy or animal-part ones (squeaky plush alligator, bully bone, rawhide, rope toy). He usually chews his toys in silence, but he is very vocal when he plays with this rawhide O. He makes throaty sounds: not growling, not whining....just as though he were talking to it, or maybe telling me how much he likes it.

12 May 2006

Finn McCool

The first night with Finn was tough, just as we expected. He doesn’t like to be separated from us—me especially—for more than about five seconds. So when we attempted to crate him last night, he was having none of it. He whined and yowled and chewed on the metal parts of the crate, so we finally split the difference with him and I slept on the floor with him. He had some hiccups and some pretty intense dreams, but otherwise he seemed perfectly content to be snuggled up next to me all night.
I took him to the office this morning, where he was the star of the show. He was almost like one of those therapeutic animals you see on the evening news. Men, women, scientists and engineers, everyone loved him and wanted to pet him. The office manager (whom I rarely even see) held him three times, once on his chest has he leaned back in his executive chair. People I had never even seen in the office before came out of cubicles I didn’t even know were occupied to see him. He was friendly, if not tail-wagging thrilled, with everyone, but he seemed to go in short waves. He would wag his tail and trot along for a few minutes, giving kisses to people’s hands, then he would sort of “come down” and lie down, and fall fast asleep. He was everybody’s best friend from 9:30 to noon.
He follows at my heels at all times, to the point where I have to walk carefully so that my heels don’t hit his chin. He won’t go anywhere first, though he took to the office elevator faster than I was expecting. He was very mellow at the office, I had thought he was going to be wired or completely petrified and seeking a dark spot under the lobby couch. He likes his Bully Bone (dried bovine tendon, we think), his rope toy and the squeaky alligator Eric picked out, though his mouth isn’t quite big enough to activate the squeaker when he chews on it. He has the most beautiful dark grey and blue eyes and the tiniest freckles on his nose. He is not a fan of car rides, or of the manual lawnmower Eric and I intercepted from a co-worker’s dump run this evening. He likes the sound of air blowing across the top of a beer bottle (he does the classic puppy head tilt to this), and he is way cuter in person than he looks in his photos.
I think he’s going to be an awesome dog.

11 May 2006

and puppy makes three

Introducing Finn! Finn is our brand new puppy dog. We adopted him from a local puppy rescue organization. He’s two months old and is a Boxer/Border Collie Mix. He’s just the most adorable little guy. It was nearly impossible to choose just one of the three from his litter, we so wanted to take all three home with us. We love his little "mohawk" stripe and the freckles on his nose.

Now that we have the house moved into, the garden planted, and the dog adopted, we're just one happy family. Cheers!

08 May 2006

ready, set, grow!

We planted our garden on Saturday afternoon. In the morning, we went to the Seattle Tilth Edible Plant Sale and bought starts for six varieties of tomato, two peppers, a watermelon, an artichoke, a butternut squash, a yellow zucchini, a nasturtium and two kinds of hops. We then got seeds for corn, carrots, pumpkin, lettuce, and beans. Everything but the beans and the hops are in the ground now, since they will require some special infrastructure due to their viney habit.

06 May 2006

creepy

We may have to change our phone number. We keep getting calls, all from men, all looking for "Angel". When we ask them where they got our number, they give vague answers: "basically, a friend gave it to me" or "the internet". Ewwww.

01 May 2006

OK/TX

Eric and I flew out to Oklahoma City on Friday morning for Lisa and Colin's wedding. We arrived to overcast skies and heavy, humid air. From there, the skies only got darker, and the air only got more humid. Soon we had pouring rain and lightning and thunder into the evening. Of course, neither Eric nor I brought any of our standard Seattle attire, so we were in the rain in our t-shirts and jeans. Oh well, it's just water.
And another thing about Oklahoma is it's complete lack of topography. Not just flat, but eerily flat. I had a hard time getting my mind around how there was just nothing on the horizon. Not a mountain, not a rolling hill, nothing. It just goes and goes, making you feel strangely claustrophobic. Lisa described Oklahoma as being "so flat, you can watch your dog run away for three days".

(the view from our hotel room in OKC)

We missed the rehearsal itself (our role was to distribute long-stemmed white roses for the flower communion), but we caught up with the family in time for the rehearsal dinner, which featured apple fritters in lieu of bread and butter. Emma stole the show by trotting around the table and giggling after telling the waitress that to drink, she wanted "cake!" I didn't get to spend much time with her, but I'm glad I got to see her so soon after our trip to San Diego.
The Bachelor Party took Eric to a divy bowling alley that exclusively served Budweiser. Eric sought to go with the flow, and nearly gagged on it. But, playing under the assumed Okie name "Festus" (as selected by Colin), he tied one game and won another.
The Bachelorette Party took me to a cheezy, tropically themed restaurant, where we imbibed drinks called Beach Blanket Bingo and Toasty Almond. We proceeded to a house and played Bachelorette Party games. The eclectic group of women was almost out of a sitcom: the indie-music lover, the intellectual, the girly-girl, the comic book enthusiast, and me.
Due to persistant rain, lightening and thunder, the wedding was moved inside. Ironically, it was Oklahoma's weather that drew Lisa there in the first place.


The wedding was lovely--everyone was very elegant and the Unitarian ceremony was based more on love than religion. Emma was adorable in her emerald green flower girl dress, and clicky shoes that she adored. Eric looked sharp in his uniform--it didn't take me long to realize that I am now married to "the guy in the uniform" when it comes to events like this. I like it.
I think I have consumed more deep fried food in the last five days than I have over the course of the last five years. Apple fritters, mozzerella sticks (twice), flaquitas, jalepeno poppers, tater tots, etc. Nothin but celery and top ramen when we get back to Seattle.
After attending the gift opening brunch, we headed to Austin to visit Heather and Stephen. The weather cleared up nicely for the drive and we stopped at Cabella's in Fort Worth, which contained more examples of taxidermy than your average natural history museum. I felt compelled to call my parents and tell them this, and my dad reminded me that in 1976, he very seriously considered taking a job with Texas Instruments in the Dallas/Fort Worth area. I spent some time over the rest of our trip considering what a different person I would be today if I had been raised in Texas. I like to think that Dad made the right choice. Thanks, Dad. I'll pick y'all out a right nice old folks home.

It seems that Texans must actually schedule time into their day for road rage. Like it's a pasttime or tradition that cannot be ignored. Football, cowboys and road rage. As Stephen put it, Texas hospitality is evident when Texans are outside of their cars. When they're inside their cars, you see the Texan hostility.

At the Texas Capitol Building.

We toured the capitol building by latching onto a high school field trip. We visited the Whole Foods flagship store and picniced on the shore of Town Lake, where we saw common grackles, a turtle, an assassin beetle, a crawfish and ducks. Later we dined at Trudy's, then rolled out of Trudy's to Cavender's Boot City, where I procured a cowgirl hat. Eric tried on a black Stetson, but just would not be convinced to buy it. We played a little dominoes before heading to bed.
We drove back to Oklahoma via Dallas. Eric wanted to see Dealey Plaza (where JFK was assassinated). We skipped the museum but checked out the grassy knoll, the sixth floor window of the Texas School Book Depository and the JFK memorial. I did note though, at the door of the museum, was this sign:

You know you're in Texas when they have to tell you that you're not allowed to bring your concealed weapon into a building.

The drive back to OKC brought a lightening storm on the horizon, but we didn't get rained on too badly. Our flights were uneventful, save for a very rough landing in Denver. Initial touchdown had us only on the port side landing gear, then a bounce and hard thud down on all wheels. Wheeeee!
Back in Seattle, we're back to unpacking the remaining boxes. It was a great trip, I hope we never stop going to new places. Cheers.