Thursday, September 27, 2007

Bouncing Round the Room*

The dogs are hyper as shit, bouncing off the walls, the furniture and me every time I get up to do something. You see, I forgot to go to the store and get their J-E-R-K-Y. They may not remember who was in the room five minutes ago, but they remember that every night at 8:30 p.m. they get their J-E-R-K-Y.

Buster is now doing his moan-back up-sit-stare-moan-back up-sit-stare routine to remind me that it is TIME FOR J-E-R-K-Y. Belle will not stop staring at me.

I just gave them a second T-R-E-A-T to try and satisfy them, but to no avail.

(Buster is on the left. It's too bad his GIANT BAT EARS aren't more visible here. Belle, on the right, is smarter than A., Buster and I combined. She is one tough cookie.)

(Homemade treats: 1 3/4 cups whole-wheat flour, 2 4.5-ounce jars of turkey baby food, just enough beef broth to make a stiff dough. Roll into little balls, smoosh with a fork and bake at 350 degrees for 18 to 20 minutes. For crunchy T-R-E-A-T-S, turn off the heat but keep the cookies in the oven overnight. In case you were interested!)
Along with fattening them up, I am busy with other preparations for the doggies' winter.

Check it out! I found a heated water dish so that their water won't freeze! (I really want this one, but we'll have to see if I can talk A. into it.)

But this is what I am really excited about: heating pads for the dog house!

This is so exciting, guys!

I really want to invest in these, but A. keeps teasing me. In all actuality, though, he's been scheming on how to fiddle with the dog house to make sure it keeps more heat in and more wind out. (The dogs stay outside during the day. They sleep inside with us. Buster usually cuddles with us on the bed all night, in fact. It's crowded, but he sure keeps us warm!)

I think, as these little pups get older, winter is going to get more and more difficult on them. I think I should definitely invest in these items. What do you think? Sensible investments or am I turning into one of those crazy people that treats their pets better than their neighbors?

*Any guesses as to who sings this song? It is one of my favorites!

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Fingers Crossed

Last night, A., Buster and I were all cuddled together on the couch watching the Rockies play. (They have a shot at the NL West pendant!) After much cuddling, cheering and swearing, Buster let out a yelp, stood up, spun around, and laid back down.

My heart broke into a million little pieces, right there.


Buster had an appointment with Dr. MotherEarth on September 17, the day after I returned home from NYC. You guys, he was such a CHAMP during his appointment! I was so proud of him. I was really pretty impressed with Dr. MotherEarth. Buster was giving her kisses on the mouth within seconds of meeting her (the cheat) and she never flinched.

She gave him a chiropractic exam, and he cooperated the whole time. She discovered that disk T13 is out of place, so she gave him a long message and worked it back into position.

Then she broke out the needles and performed accupuncture on my baby. Again, he was such a champ. He didn't seem to be nervous at all. I was nervous. (I hate needles. I pass out when I get my blood drawn, and have only donated blood once. I cried three times before I was even in the chair.) He had three needles across his lower back and three down each rear leg. The needles were supposed to harness energy and encourage his muscles to hold the vertebrae in place.

You know, I think that makes sense. It seems to me it is similar to the way I use yoga to stregthen my muscles in my neck and back to keep my herniated disk from getting worse.

Buster rolled over and rested on one of his rear legs and I thought I was going to pass out from hyperventalation right there. Dr. MotherEarth assured me that the needles were flexible and would bend with his muscles, but damn it freaked me out. Buster didn't even flinch. He just basked in all the pets he was getting to keep him still. He was so relaxed that by the time Dr. MotherEarth took out the needles he was sound asleep on my lap.

At the end of the appointment, Dr. MotherEarth gave me a little bottle of a homeopathic potion to help with any future pain Buster might experience. She didn't thing that he'd need future acupuncture sessions.


So, we've started Buster on a three-day regime of dosing with the homeopathic potion. Oh, I just really wish I knew how to make him feel better.

The World May Be Ending: I had a great morning

Instead of the usual routine of tackling me or pinning me down and tickling my feet while I hit snooze no less than 20 times, this morning A. snuggled up to me and asked if I'd like a donut for breakfast.

"And coffee?" I mumbled, still vaguely aware of my morning dream, warm under the covers. (And it was such an awesome dream! I dreamed that my sister, T., just gave birth to a little boy with lots and lots of dark hair. It was one of those dreams where you feel things, you know? I woke up this morning feeling like I'd just held an hour-old newborn, all warm and snuggly and smooshy up against my chest. Oh, man.)

"Of course!" (His ass is a little too chipper in the morning, if you ask me.)

While he drove into town to pick up my favorite breakfast in the whole wide world,* I hopped in the shower. A. returned as I was getting dressed for the day. While smearing on some eye shadow, A. came up to me, grabbed my plentiful rear, and said, "You have the best ass, ever. Don't ever lose it!"

Sweet! This was one fantastic morning!

* Sweet, sugary donuts and bitter, black coffee is my favorite combination of flavors and textures, ever. So yummy. However, while running around Scotland, JelBel and I had the most incredible breakfast in Edinburgh. Warm chocolate soup and fresh croissants. I went back for at least three, maybe four more croissants in order to mop up every last bit of the chocolate. Oh, Lord have mercy that breakfast was divine. If I find something comparable here in the States, A. will never have to worry that my ass will disappear. It will be guaranteed to be quite visible and even more plentiful.

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

One, Two, Three, --

Jess tagged me with this fun, quick meme. I blushed I was so flattered! But a smidge nervous you'll be a tad disappointed...

Four Jobs I Have Had In My Life
1. roofer (I wanted to be on the shingle crew but got stuck playing with hot tar all day.)
2. crew supervisor for a catering company (exhausting, but fun!)
3. directed a publications department for a national non-profit in DC (So. Fun. But overworked.)
4. graphic designer/publications manager (currently - and loving it!)

Four Movies I Can Watch Over and Over
1. The Bourne Identity (Lame. I know!)
2. When Harry Met Sally
3. Steel Magnolias
4. Grumpy Old Men

Four TV Shows I Like To Watch
1. Friends
2. House
3. Will & Grace
4. As Time Goes By (BBC)

Four Places I Have Been On Vacation
1. Prague and Czesky Krumlov, Czech Republic
2. India
3. Seattle and LA
4. Vegas, baby!

Four Favorite Foods
1. Sushi
2. Cheese, of any sort
3. Avocados
4. Anything Thai

Four Websites I Visit Daily
1. Much of my blogroll, many of which are not actually posted to my blogroll (Let me know if you have any objections to my listing your blog, please!)
3. Yahoo! Mail
4. Um – you guys are most of my internet time!

Four Places I Would Rather Be
1. At home, with A. and the silly pups
2. Fly-fishing with A.
3. Goofing around with my sisters
4. New York/DC

Four Bloggers I Am Tagging
1. Tessie
2. Shauna
3. Pixelpi
4. Swistle

Monday, September 24, 2007

Moose Meat, Turning Leaves and Snow

The kind of news that comes with Fall in these parts:

A. arrived home at 1:00 a.m. on Saturday (Sunday?) without a ram. Boo. It looks like it will be moose meat, and only moose meat, for the winter. Have I mentioned I am getting pretty tired of moose meat? (Pann, you have some powerful karma!)

He is in fantastic spirits, if not sore as hell from hiking 30 miles or so in two days. I'd be dead, let alone in good spirits.


As I descended the last hill into town during my morning commute, I noticed that nearly half of all the deciduous trees in town are already turning. The aspen in front of our house is starting to turn gold.


According to a local radio station, we are supposed to get snow tonight. Last night, it started snowing in my hometown while I was on the phone with my Papa Bear, and other towns across the state already have snow on the ground this morning.


What Fall news do you have today?

Friday, September 21, 2007

Here, little sheepie, sheepie, sheepie

That alarm clock at 1:35 a.m. sucked so bad.

A. left at 2:00 a.m. to go big horn sheep hunting. As I type this, I realize I never posted about the results of his first trip. (Because you care!)

He and his four hunting buddies were out for a week in very rugged country at 10,000- and 12,000-feet altitude. He did see some rams--some of the largest he's ever seen--but didn't manage to "harvest" one. (I hate that word, "harvest." Let's face it: there is something very different from harvesting corn and shooting a breathing, moving, arguably cognitive animal dead.)

Anyway. A. learned that the very instant one of these sheep see you they are running. They don't take a second or two to process what they see. They just run. Bolt and run! With the agility to cover rocky, unsteady ground that they are born with. And A. had a hard time chasing them with his silly human feet and wobbly ankles. He took two shots at a running ram and missed. Bummer. The guys came home sore, covered in blisters and stinking to high heaven.

So. He and C.R., one of the guys who originally joined him, headed out again. C.R.'s uncle and cousin are meeting them near the area. They've brought their horses, so at least the guys don't have to carry their 50+ pound packs (and hopefully a ram!) for 13 miles each way. With a change in elevation of 3,000 to 5,000 feet. Jesus.

I am fidgety and antsy, like always am when A. is hunting. My tummy just won't relax, and I can only focus on the tasks at hand in a really half-assed kind of way. The last remaining influence of my Catholic upbringing is urging me to light a candle, but I don't want to burn the house down while I am at work (or do I? There would be a lot less cleaning.). Thus, I feel like I am not doing my part to influence The Universe to make sure A. has a safe hunt. Since I do not have a lit candle burning all day I worry that I single-handedly am putting him at risk.

Catholic guilt and questionable mental health do not a happy Artemisia make.

I think of all the things that can go wrong, from a car accident to slipping on the side of a mountain. Bears. BEARS. A sudden blizzard. Yes, in these parts and at that altitude this is a completely reasonable fear. Really. Even in September.

I am also anxious for this hunt to go well for A.'s sake. He's put a lot of time and effort into it and I'd hate for this opportunity to have come and gone without a reward. He's anxious to have the hunt over so he can focus on school, but I am sure he'll be disappointed if the season closes without a ram.

I hope he comes home soon. My stomach lining hopes so, too.

Thursday, September 20, 2007


I have been trying to pull together a post for, well, too long, and am struggling mightily. It seems that I can't properly construct a sentence to save my ass.


I am going to cheat and throw this out there to you, my Five Faithful Readers: What are some of your favorite books and authors? Please feel free to respond immediately or to take your time, mull it over, and submit a lengthy, thoughtful comment with loads of good stuff. Whichever suits your fancy!

I am serious about the book recommendations, though. I am desperate for some good reading! (That has not the slightest thing to do with my thesis. Yay!) Also, I really, really like how many of you write and I am a huge believer in the theory that those who write well often read a lot.

Hope to hear from you!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007


Did you know that with 8.2 million residents in an area of 322 square miles, New York City is the most densely populated area in North America? Yes, you probably did know that. But, did you know that my Big Square Red State is the least populous in the entire United States? Maybe. Or maybe you forgot it was a state? Don't be ashamed; that happens more frequently than any of us would like to admit.

I've been to NYC before, but haven't spent much time there. Now that DPR and AP live there, I have the fantastic opportunity to experience the city in a slightly different way. I have an apartment to come home to, friends to meet, places to go rather than a hotel room to leave to go around riding an open-air tour bus to see the Brooklyn Bridge, the Statue of Liberty and the Empire State Building. I get to experience neighborhoods, and it so good.

I spent all of my time in Manhattan, which, mercifully is laid out as a grid. So, while I never worried too much about getting totally lost, I did wonder how I'd maneuver in a city. I've been back in the Big Square Red State from DC for three years now. Would I be all awkward, trying to get around the city? Would I be paranoid of missing my subway stop all the time?

Thankfully, I fell right into step, prancing around the city. I was a metropolitan pedestrian once again, confidently covering the city with my purposeful steps. March on!


At La Guardia, as I boarded my flight home, I felt proud of how I handled myself among eight million neighbors and streets so numerous they can't all be found on a map.

Me: [swipe my ticket through the ticket reader at the United Airlines gate. Stride confidently down the corridor.]

Flight Attendant: "Excuse me! Excuse me! This isn't Denver!"

Me: [Turn, smile at the gentleman behind me. I wonder what flight he is supposed to be on?]

Flight Attendant: "Passenger Sagebrush! This is not flight 409 to Denver. This is flight 406 to Chicago!"

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Hearing Aid

Earlier this evening, A. and I were driving home from dinner and listening to the Dodgers-Padres game on XM radio.

A.: Fucking Dodgers. My mom can't stand the announcer for the Dodger's. He won't work with a color announcer.

Me: What the fuck? What kind of asshole is this guy? Why the hell do the Dodger's let him announce? Jesus Christ.

A.: He's been announcing for years and he just wants to do it his way. Since he's been around forever he gets what he wants.

Me: Whatever he wants? How the hell is this legal? Why aren't Dodgers fans boycotting? What a son-of-a-bitch. I hope he ends up in a nursing home with a roommate that is black and feisty as hell and won't take his bullshit. I don't believe this.

A. (Throws his head back and starts laughing his ass off): Color announcer. Not colored announcer. (more hysterical laughing, slaps his knee) I was wondering why you were so fired up about this guy.

Me.: Ooooohhhh. Well, I thought it was weird that you used the phrase "colored announcer" but I thought you were demonstrating this guy's assholery or something.


Just one of the more-often-than-not daily examples of my poor hearing (and tendency to over-react and get all melodramatic on A.'s ass). As a read over this, I swear a helluva lot, too.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Five Things I am Loving Right. This. Minute.

In an effort to balance the rather grumpy post yesterday, here are five things I am really loving right now. In brief. 'Cause I am tuckered out.

1. A.

I cannot adequately express how much I love and admire this man. This will have to do for now.

2. A bundle of cells, busy dividing

That is right! My sister, T., is pregnant!!!! WOO HOO!!! She is due mid-March, and I COULD NOT BE ANY HAPPIER.

My happiness for her spans the full spectrum from sublime delight in this profound and awesome (in the fullest sense of the word) gift in her life to ridiculously, delusionally, and almost hysterically ecstatic because I get to be a full-blown, blood-related aunt. (I love the hell out of my niece and nephews who belong to my step-brother and A. sisters, but I am going to admit it: this one is already my favorite.)

Some things I am already planning with this little kiddo:

  1. His/her first international trip. England, Italy or the Czech Republic. By the time he/she is 14 years-old.
  2. Many, many baseball games, included many Twins games. Also, we will attend every College World Series together, beginning when he/she is three months-old.
  3. Teaching him/her how to make my mom's chocolate chip cookies. T. can teach her/him how to make Mom's brownies and sour cream cookies. T. does get the better end of this deal: the sour cream cookies are sure to be the favorite! SO YUYMMY!
  4. T. and I will both teach this little shit how to make aebleskivers. As well as how to spell aebleskivers.
T. - I love you so much.

3. Skinny Dip Beer

New Belgium, the nearby regional microbrewery, brews a seasonal beer named Skinny Dip. SO GOOD. (I also always love Fat Tire, another of their beers. But right. this. minute. it is Skinny Dip all the way.)

4. Autumn

Yes, indeedy, fall is fast approaching and I won't need to worry about shaving my legs nearly so frequently, and thusly, won't be sent into fits of rage every time I sneeze.

Yes, Black Sheeped, winter is nearly here. Our nearest neighbor spent most of last evening sawing and chopping wood - in preparation for winter stoves and fireplaces that will soon be in use. Uufta, winter is long in these parts.

5. AGR and her hubby AR. You guys enrich my and A.'s lives SO MUCH. Thank you.

** BONUS**

You guys!! I never thought I'd be as thrilled as I am by "meeting" all of you and that I'd keep in such better touch with others of you. I hope you all are having a wonderful day, free of the spiteful schemes of the Xerox corporation.

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Five Things I am Hating Right. This. Minute.

1. Xerox

Go to hell, Xerox. FUCK YOU.

A word of advice, my Five Faithful Readers: Don't ever, ever, ever, under any circumstances WHATSOEVER buy or rent a printer from the Xerox Corporation. (And don't give your "purchasing department" that much freakin' power in choosing the instruments of your slow demise, either. Oh, the hindsight!)

The giant, energy sucking, heavy-breathing big-ass box will not print when you need it to, uh, PRINT. And then, when you call customer service, after reminding them yet again that yes, YES INDEEDY you have a maintenance plan so please no, no, no DON'T YOU DARE charge me for this worthless phone call, you will be asked why, exactly, is it a problem that your printer does not print.

Jesus Christ, I wish I was making this up.

2. When an 11-hour work day seems "short."

Enough said.

3. Extra "projects"

Why is it that freelance work always lands in my lap when I am pulling short 11-hour workdays for my other full-time job?

Oh, yeah. Because I don't know how to say "no." And A. and I are on the brink of the poverty line thanks to our loooooove of grad school, so I suppose my skinny-ass checking account has some sway here.

4. Goosebumps

I get goosebumps on my legs EVERY TIME I sneeze. Then, freakishly, the hair on my legs is longer, as a direct result of the sneeze-induced goosebumps. Weird. ANNOYING. It renders any and all recent shaving sessions completely pointless.

Am I missing the real culprit here? Maybe I should hate the sneezes?

5. Raymond

Arg! Does anyone like the TV show Everyone Hates Raymond? Oh, Jesus! It is called Everyone Loves Raymond or Everyone Hates Raymond? I swear to you that I genuinely cannot remember. Good grief. Anyway, if you do happen to like the show, please, by all means explain its appeal to me.

AAAAHHHHH. Thanks for listening.