You Just Never Know What Might Be Hiding Under The Bed…

Ed’s parents have taken a little vacation, a long weekend, just the two of them.  They asked Ed to look after their dogs while they were gone.  Of course, he said yes.  Said he’d even be happy to do it.  It’s a real honest-to-goodness vacation for them and it’s been far too long since their last one. 

So tonight, after Ed and the boys and I watched a movie (Brave–loved it!) and had dinner (Tex-Mex–awesome!!), we dropped in at his parents house to feed the dogs and give them some attention.  Sir Patrick Mayo is a standard French poodle.  He’s champagne colored and likes getting his hair cut and styled like a fluffy 80’s perm until Ed reminds him what a waste of time his pride is and then he sulks.  There’s Julie the Boston Bulldog who is absolutely positive that she’s the top dog and she will take down any male dog who tests her authority.  Yes, being a Boston Bulldog, she only weighs 20 pounds.  She’s still top dog!  🙂  And then there’s Burban, the pup of their pack.  He’s a full blood mutt who happens to be mostly black with a small white patch on his chest.  He was named Burban because my in-laws found him sleeping in their garage as a puppy underneath the suburban.  If my mother-in-law had accidentally put the car into drive instead of reverse, things would’ve turned out badly.  Fortunately for all of us, she didnt’.   Burban most enjoys chasing after cats and boys and Julie and wreaking havoc wherever possible.  It’s just that everything is so exciting and he has too much energy and he’s really not sure what to do with all that energy!

Once Julie and Burban had licked their bowls clean and Patrick refused to admit there was food in his bowl or that his body required any sort of sustenance, we let all the dogs run through the house and chase after the boys.  That is why you have children, right?  To wear down the dogs?  Anyway, the dogs and the boys made multiple trips up and down the long hall and scattered the rugs and absolutely nothing fragile was broken.  After the dogs and the boys looked sufficiently tired, the young dogs were put in the back yard and Ed and I went to find Sir Patrick Mayo.  Sir Patrick Mayo was cowering on top of Ed’s parents bed and shivering because he absolutely knew he had been abandoned and his people were never coming back.

And then, I noticed it.  My dear in-laws, most likely my father-in-law, had taken louvered doors-the quarter width ones you might have found on a closet door back in the 80’s- and propped them up along both sides of the bed.  There has always been a wooden box at the foot of the bed so the dogs could easily climb onto the bed. But this, this was too much.  Their bedroom has a dark, gothic feel to it anyway, but now, you can’t see under the bed at all!  It totally freaked me out!  You have no idea what might be hiding under the bed waiting to grab your foot while you’re sleeping!  Mummy?  Vampire?  Crazed Murderer?  Werewolf?  Zombie?  Alien?  You have no idea!  Any one of them could be under the bed and you would be totally unaware!

I told Ed and the boys about this.  I described the fear with which one might be jolted when said unknown creature grabbed their sleeping foot and pulled them under the bed and started eating their organs.  I even demonstrated the scream which might slip from their mouths.

They all looked at me like I was crazy.

“Where do you get this stuff?” asked Logan.  (He can be a cynical little monster some times.)

“Dude,”  I said, “You don’t understand!  Oma made me watch all of the scary movies when I was your age.  She wouldn’t let me go to sleep.  She made me watch every single scary movie ever made just because she didn’t want to watch them by herself.  She said she was preparing me for a potential attack.  I mean really, if a poltergeist was going to target just one person, it would be her and not me.  The point is, I know all about these kinds of things and you always leave the space under the bed within clear sight so you can see any monsters under the bed!  It should be a law!”

“Mom,  you’re weird,” said Trip.

“I don’t want to watch any more movies with you, Mom,” said Logan.

I think Ed just rolled his eyes at my histrionics.

I might have seen a zombie hand pushing the louvered door out of its way.

Traitorous Black Dog

Abigail has firmly declared herself Ed’s dog.  Nevermind that we got her for the boys. Never mind that she was their birthday present.  Or that they named her.  She has latched on to Ed and Ed is just as enamored with her.  It’s actually pretty disgusting.  He talks to her like she’s his baby.  He takes her to the office.  He has her leash trained!  She spends her days napping on the couch in his office instead of toiling the hours away in the back yard, keeping it free of unwanted varmints as a good dog should. 

But when Ed is not home, or even just not available to Abigail, she cuddles up to me.  I whisper in her ear.  I tell her who really fills her doggie bowl.  She knows who feeds her.

The Perfect Dog

I have always been a dog lover, but there are a few things on my list that make a perfect dog.

1. A perfect dog will cuddle and show affection, but will NOT lick me. Ever.

2. A perfect dog will take his or her bath and not do the full body shake out until he or she has been dried off and has given me the chance to step back from the ptoential spray.

3. A perfect dog will always be waiting for you in the window when you drive up, every single time.

Pippen is the perfect dog.  Abigail is his polar opposite.  Abigail’s lack of perfect qualities may have something to do with her becoming yet another female animal in the house who thinks Ed has hung the moon.

Snow Days

With half of the country (more or less) covered in snow and freezing in subzero temperatures, we were not left out.  I’d like to lodge a formal complaint.  North Texas has a strict one snow per year policy and Mother Nature has passed the allotted snow days this year.  All of this snow needs to go back up north!

The boys and I actually had a lovely morning playing video games together and laying about the house in our moderately warm pajamas.  Things didn’t begin to fall apart until our late lunch began when I realized there was nothing to eat in the house.  Oops!  Luckily, the boys were happy with frozen chicken nuggets.  I’ll have them working the microwave by themselves before too much longer.  Around 3 this afternoon, they had begged and pleaded and cajoled enough that we all got dressed and went outside.  We lasted for about 15 minutes.  The dogs could have stayed out all day and never felt the weather.  It is COLD outside!

We are now under lots of blankets and cuddled up and pretending it’s not a frozen wasteland outside.

The Evil Emanated from Her

Have you ever felt evil emanating from an animal?  A malice you just couldn’t quite put your finger on?  I did just two days ago.

Ed and I had gone out with some friends and came home pretty late to see a strange cat sitting on the air conditioner/heater condenser thingie outside of our side door.  The cat was brindle colored.  I’ve never heard of a brindle cat before, much less  seen one.  Ed made a gentle swatting motion at the cat to shoo it away from the door.  The cat slowly sauntered off, sure of its right to be wherever it wanted to be. 

We all went inside and the cat jumped our fence into the back yard and sauntered up onto our porch.  We let the dogs out because they had to do their business.  The cat just looked at us.  Chills ran up my spine.  Why was this cat not afraid of dogs it didn’t know?

I started to expect the cat to morph into a Hogwarts sorcery professor at any time.  I didn’t expect said sorcerer to say, “Hey, I want to take your kids to a school of sorcery here in the states.”  I expected the cat/sorcerer to want to suck out my soul and the souls of everyone I loved.

The dogs finally did what we had sent them out to do and we brought them back in because A) it was cold, and B) there was a freaky, possessed cat in our backyard that wouldn’t leave.

The friends and Ed and I sat down at the kitchen table to play a game of cards and partake in some adult beverages.  Every time we looked up, there was the cat, prancing back and forth in the window or just looking in at us, me.

I feel like I need to add at this point that I don’t normally feel like this about cats.  We own five (5) cats. Or, rather, they maintain living quarters in the house we own and refuse to get anywhere near the “outdoors” for fear that they might not get to live in the lap of luxury any longer.  I have never felt like any of my cats would turn into a human witch either.

So here is this freaky, brindle cat watching me drink and play cards. 

We ended our evening and hoped that the cat would be gone by morning.   Such was not the case.  I took the dogs out at 7:00 in the morning when Abby the Puppy woke up and there was the cat, curled up on an outside chair like she owned the place.  As the dogs went outside and bounded over to her, she slowly stood up and then stretched before slowly walking over to the stairs.  Why weren’t my dogs barking loudly and running this strange cat off?  I really don’t have an answer other than the freaky, weird cat had cast a spell over them.  So my dogs are sniffing the new cat and following her around like she’s wearing doggie perfume.  She’s lifting her tail and prancing through their legs. I picked her up and tossed her over the fence so the dogs could get on with their routine because I wanted to go back to bed.

The boys came home later that morning after spending the night with Oma and the cat was still there.  They started asking completely unreasonable things of me like, “Mommy, can we keep the cat?”

“Absolutely not!  Have you lost your minds??”

I’m all nice and nurturing with my kids.  Hit me up if you need any parenting advice!

The process went on all day.  The cat stayed on the porch or in the back yard all day long and getting the dogs to do their business required an act of Congress.  Ed decided that his heart would melt around 6:00 that evening and I threatened him with a slow and painful death.  He asked me if that wasn’t already happening to him and if it hadn’t started with his utterance of “I Do.” 

I hate it when he has retorts like that.  It makes me add years to his sentence.  At his current rate, he’s going to have to stay alive until he’s 105, the poor guy.

So Ed got all sappy over the cat and wondered if it was male or female and hoped that if it was a female that she wasn’t pregnant and wouldn’t have kittens under the porch in the cold north Texas winter.  He is a dramatic sap!

So I said that there was only one way to find out.  I went outside and picked up the cat to find out it’s gender. Girl.  What stray cat just allows some strange woman to randomly pick it up and check out the gender bits?  I felt contaminated after picking up the cat, so I washed my hands and arms for 18 minutes.  Then I cooked dinner with this weird cat watching me the whole time.

Fast forward to today.  I worked all day, so I didn’t know the scoop on the cat.  I called Ed on my way home (How pathetic is it that I find time for 2 calls on my 8 minute drive home?) to find out about the cat drama and he says that the cat is gone.  I decided that that moment was the right moment to tell Ed about the feelings that the cat had evoked in me.  Ed told me that I was nuts and there was nothing strange about the cat but that’s just because he doesn’t have a sixth sense or a feel for the occult.  I called my mom and told her about the cat just to make sure I wasn’t crazy.  She totally agreed with me!  She said she had seen the cat too, all the way over at her house, and it had freaked her out too!!

The Doggie Meeting

The husband works in an office with both of his parents which sounds like torture to me, but they all seem to like it, enjoy it even, and there usually isn’t any major blood shed at the end of the day.  His parents have the luxury of being able to bring an assortment of animals to the office every single day.  His mom brings the animals in and they get shuffled around accordingly.  The cats spend their days in my FIL’s office upstairs.  My MIL keeps an enormous standard poodle and a very loud French bulldog in her office with a kennel for the bulldog because she can’t seem to stop jumping on people’s legs when they come into my MIL’s office.   Ed has been bringing his new puppy to the office so  she doesn’t run free around the house all day, emptying bowel and bladder where ever she chooses, and chewing up everything she can get her sharp little teeth around.

Ed’s office and his mother’s office are right next door to each other and the very loud French bulldog, who is female, began objecting vehemently the first time Ed brought the new puppy to the office.   With them both being of the female variety, this was expected.  Right now, Abby the puppy and Julie the French bulldog are about the same size.  Every time Julie would catch the scent of Abby or hear Abby’s nails clicking on the tile floor,  she would go nuts, yapping her little head off and slipping on the floor trying to get the poor, little puppy girl.

But no meeting had ever actually taken place between the two girls, because until today, Abby  had been carried past Julie, safely out of harms way.  Today was different though because Ed and Abby got to the office first.  Ed put a 2 foot tall board in front of his door to keep Abby inside his office. (Yes, high-tech stuff here.)  My MIL and Julie and Patrick made it to the office some time later and Julie smelled her new nemesis.  Julie jumped up and put her front paws on the board in front of the door.  Julie was too shocked to bark or do anything else when Abby met her on the other side of the board.  Abby hasn’t yet learned that she shouldn’t like strange dogs, so Abby licked Julie on the nose.  Abby caressed Julie’s face with her paw ever so gently.  Julie stood there, paws on the board, shocked into speechlessness (yaplessness?).  Ed and his mom stood there, watching the encounter making sure neither dog got too frisky until Ed’s mom decided it was time to actually set her things down in her own office.

And Patrick, the standard poodle, where was he?  He was just standing there, watching the whole encounter, wondering when he was going to get to sniff someone’s butt.  Typical male.