Sunday, March 31, 2013

Family Photo and Rooster Sauce

Linda almost picked a dress to wear the exact color of Tier and Sarah's dress; she so wished she would have. It would have looked better if she matched the other girls.  Even Penny's ribbon on her dress coordinated.  Tier always does the best photo poses.  If you look closely, you can see Linda's giant knee from her fake metal and plastic knee replacement. Ha! It's about twice as big as her other  She forgets about until she sees a picture of herself in shorts or a shorter skirt.

For lunch, she ate with her friends at a Vietnamese restaurant. It was a big group, but their food started to come out withing 3 minutes of ordering.  She found out she likes Sriracha.  That is the red stuff in the rooster bottle.  She is going to buy some to have at home.

Happy Easter

Linda isn't a big holiday celebrator in the traditional sense.  We don't do decorations or big dinners.  Our house has no Christmas tree, Thanksgiving turkey or Easter Ham.  She doesn't make us take photos with the Easter bunny, although she kind of wants to. 

This would be Chimi's face if he did a Bunny photo.  Frozen in fear.
There are always Christmas presents, but Linda has never been one to "love" decorating the house or cooking a mass quantity of food.   Easter always feels different to her though. It's such a special time of remembrance and the true Thanksgiving to her.  Once she was lost, and now shes saved, forgiven and a new person!   Early this morning (I waited until 4:10 to wake her up) she went out to the deck and felt an overwhelming sense of God while she was praying.

Linda's friend Laura went to sunrise service on the Mall this morning
  See, I should keep waking her up that early!  If she would have stayed asleep, she would have kept dreaming that it was the year 3044.  Cars were small coffins that you laid down in, closed the lid and traveled underground in tubes full of gushing water.  She also had a small puppy tucked in her shirt that turned into a hamster than a rat. 

Come back later today and see Penelope in her Easter outfit.  I bet it will be adorable!!




Saturday, March 30, 2013

Well Whoopie

What an amazing day!  Spring is in full bloom, and so is Linda's sneezing fits.  We just got back from a long walk and she has been sneezing ever since.  With the beautiful, warm weather comes lots of growing things.  Hopefully, her allergies won't be as bad as they've been in past springs.

Linda found that piece of missing blanket on her chair
Even though Linda was gone 6 hours today, neither Chim or I had an accident.  Chim did throw-up on Linda's favorite black leather chair while she was working.  She had a quilt on top of the cushion, but the vomit seeped through a little onto the leather!  He ate a piece of his black furry blanket last night and it made him sick.  Tonight he isn't getting any sort of woobie to sleep with.  Leather cleaner took care of the stain on the chair and the quilt is in the washer.  Chim ate lunch and seemed fine on the walk so Linda's not too concerned.  He won't be happy tonight when he has nothing to keep him calm when it's bedtime.
Linda will have to eat that cracked one since it won't look pretty

 Linda is making Whoopie-Pies to take to her party tonight/ (Thank you Pintrest. Of course they will look nothing like the perfect picture they posted.)  The batter spread way bigger than she thought it would.  As soon as they cool, she is going to fill them with frosting and make cookie-sandwiches.  Then she is going press sprinkles into the edges because everything is better with sprinkles.  Here are the professional Whoopie Pies.  Linda's won't look anything like this.
How did them get them so perfectly round?

UPDATE:
So they don't look too horrible and they taste OK


Friday, March 29, 2013

Precious Penny

Linda had a great time tonight with Penelope.  Sarah and Taylor were scheduled to volunteer at the Easter program at church. Penny was still battling the remnants of her cold and they didn't want to infect the other kids. Right after TKD, Linda rushed to their house so they could get to church on time.  Besides reading all Penny's favorite books, they played with her new barn and farm animals.  Linda realized she forgot to take photos, so here is an old one we already posted. 
Linda is sad she missed the Easter program, but is so happy to spend time with her sweet girl. Taylor said the skit was a Scooby-Doo mystery and Tierney played Daphne.  As soon as someone posts some photos on FB, we'll post them here.
Tierney looks so much like Linda's Mom when she was a young woman.

 Tomorrow will be another long day for us.  We won't be having a dog walker, so Linda is planning on getting up extra early and walking us before her first class.  As soon as she gets home in the afternoon, she'll walk us again before she heads out to a friends house. 

(Linda has been thinking about changing the blog.  She knows 99.9% of people don't like reading blogs that are written in a dogs voice.  It's annoying, especially to newer readers who might get confused. Back in 2008 when she started this blog, she never imagined it would last this long.  She'll keep the title, just write in her words, not in mine.)  

Thursday, March 28, 2013

Yaff to the Rescue

Linda felt kind of bad because she was gone today from 4:45 until 9:30 p.m.  We are very spoiled dogs.  There has only been few times during the day we've gone over 4 hours without an outside bathroom break or human company.  Both of us were good dogs tonight and didn't have any accidents.  I can snooze in my bed for hours, but Chimi is such a codependent, people-dog that it makes him anxious when he is alone that long.  He needs love, assurance, food, and to expend his pent-up energy by running in the yard.  (I know there are a lot of sleeping pictures of Chimi on this blog, but he really is like the energizer bunny.)  He could be the model dog for a Vermont mans new company.  The guy developed an energy bar called Yaff Bars that are good for both dogs and humans!  I don't think it would be a good idea for him to have any kind of energy bar.  Chim will do multiply hour long walks a day without slowing down.  Linda is thinking about buying some for me though.  I'm so poky and slow on walks, it might give me the energy to actually keep up!  They would be pretty handy for a long hike.  When we go hiking at Great Falls, Linda could keep one or two in my carry-me front pack.


Who gets the first bite? 

Oh Well

Well, the furniture rearranging didn't go as planned.  The living room and dining room didn't change after Linda decided the current placement of furniture is probably the best layout for the small space.  The bedroom was a bust.  Turns out the room is just 10' wide!  It's a few feet longer, but you can't do much with a queen size bed when the room is so narrow.  Her triple dresser is beautiful.  Her headboard is beautiful and so is the giant tallish dresser.  She loves her bedroom set... except is was made for a room three times the size of our room.  The dresser top, a slab of granite must weigh over 100 pounds.  In order to even lift the dresser 1" off the floor, you have to take off the granite and 50 pound mirror on top of the granite. Sliding the dresser itself is a chore too! It busted right through those magic sliding discs they sell at Bed Bath and Beyond.  Once it got moved a few feet, Linda gave up on the first try and now its stuck about 6" from the side of the bed.  She can barely open the draws.  It's going to take 4 big guys who don't mind her saying "Please move it there, no wait... over there.  Can we please try that wall?" until she finds the right spot for all the furniture. 

Chimi really likes where the bed is now because he can see out both windows.  While Linda was studying her routines, he made himself comfortable in the crook of her arm.  He was actually snoring a little bit.  He is the most cuddly dog on the planet. 

Randomness

Penny and Sarah were feeling a little under the weather this morning, so Sarah told Nana that she better not visit or risk getting sick. We've been praying for their total healing. (Linda makes us wait for our food while she prays for Penny before meals or cookies.)

Linda came home from her Kid Fit class (Fifteen 2-9 year old kids!) all energized and ready to roll.  She walked us then cleaned the house.  It's looking pretty spiffy.  Hopefully she is going to get help later to rearrange the furniture in the living room and dining room.

In other news, Chimi has outgrown his collar.  It is hard to believe that he is full Chihuahua since he is a beast, 17 pounds of muscle.  She saw the parents and you've all seen his newborn photos
That's him on the left.  He has bigger peanuts over his eyes and no white by his tail.
His Mommy was blond but his Daddy looks just like Chimi.
Tomorrow is the Easter Resurrection celebration at church.  Tierney always does skits or puppets.  There is a moon bounce, face painting, balloons, food, candy and a live-interactive walk through Easter story. If you live close by, you should come!  You don't even have to be kid. 
She makes me wear this every year. 


Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Don't Get Your Hackles Up

In Chimi's whole life, Linda has never seen the hackles on his back raise up.  He can be an excitable and quirky dog, but never, ever aggressive.  Linda actually googled "raised hackles" to do some research since it was so odd for him to do display that kind of behavior.  She thought it was just a sign of aggression, but it can be just like humans who get goose pimples or a chill down their back.  It looked like this picture, except there wasn't any teeth involved, he isn't a wolf and there wasn't another dog underneath him.  (Surprisingly, there are not a lot of good photos if you google "raised hackles.")
Wolves just having fun

It all started when Linda was taking a nap on The Big Bed earlier this afternoon. She was going to try and stay awake (remember the other days post?) but since she had the afternoon off and wanted to be alert in church tonight, she laid down for a bit.  Of course Chim was under the top blanket sleeping with her.  Linda woke up and thought she heard a kitten mew.  Seconds later, Chimi heard the same thing.  It sounded like a kitten in distress!  Chimi started a deep growl.  He shot up from under the blanket and stood like a guard dog.  Ears up, tail straight out back, eyes fixated towards the window and his hackles went up from his neck to his tail.  It was eerie and actually kind of freaked Linda out.  She left him inside and went out in the yard to investigate.  No kitten, not even a cat.  It was a little toddler  visiting the neighbors behind our house.  She was sitting in the yard making the high-pitched kitten sounds.  They were so realistic it even fooled Chimi!  I guess he wasn't angry, he was just highly intrigued and wanted to save the day.  This dog doesn't have raised hackles, but I thought Tier would like the photo.
Tier:  A real life Puddles!


Tuesday, March 26, 2013

But You Said...

Lately, I've reverted back to waking Linda up really early to go outside.  It's always an emergency.  I do my business and scamper right back inside.  This morning, it was 4:15 a.m.  There are plenty of people who routinely get up that early (or earlier!) to start their day, but Linda isn't one of them.  Today, her first class wasn't until 10:00, so the alarm was set for 7:00.  She shouldn't have gone back to bed.  At 4:15, she was alert and felt great.  At 7:00 when she was awoken by the alarm, she felt so tired and dragging.  I guess its a whole sleep-cycle thing.  Tomorrow, she isn't going to go back to bed and test how she feels during the day.  Even Chimi wanted to go back to bed at 7:00.  While he was outside, Linda made her bed and started to get coffee ready.  She let him back inside and he disappeared for 15 minutes, not coming when she called for him. 
She went looking and this is how she found her just made bed.  All the pillows were pushed to the side and quilts messy.
(Taylor, recognize that old blue pillow case from when you were little?)
She pulled back the covers and guess who popped up? Chim unmade the bed so he could be warm and snuggled under the blankets.  You can tell he was "busted" by the look on his face.  Linda remade the bed, told him "NO UNDER THE COVERS" and continued to get ready.  Ten minutes later....
"You just said not to go under the covers, you didn't say anything about the pillows."
He didn't move the covers this time, he just worked his way under the pillows on top of the covers! Technically, Chimi obeyed what she said so Linda wasn't mad at him for messing it up again.


Monday, March 25, 2013

Say "NO" to Sweets

Our snow is melting and will probably be gone tomorrow.  It has just been raining for the last few hours. (I know no one comes to my blog for weather reports, but just in case your wondering.)  We are trained to go outside in the rain/snow/wind to do our business, but I hate actually taking a walk when there is anything wet on the ground. 

Both Chim and I have been so hungry lately.  Ever since Linda stopped mixing brown rice in with our wet food and chicken, we've been starving.  Those carbs really fill you up, but they also make you chubby.  I've lost 1/2 pound and now weigh 6.8.  Since my goal weight is 5 1/2 pounds, that's a great loss!  Even Chimi has lost a pound.  His ribs are showing again.  We only get one or two small cookie bites a week on the days PW walks us.  Linda's weight loss has stalled because ice cream keeps sneaking into her freezer and ending up in her belly.

Linda had such a blast subbing the Aqua Boot Camp earlier this evening.  There were 8 new people who never did a water class.  After, they all came up to tell her how fun it was.  One of her regular students said it was the best class she ever taught.  It was hard and her muscles are exhausted.  She is really looking forward to bedtime.  Every night when Linda gets into her soft, comfy warm bed, she does a happy wiggle. 
This would be so cute to hang over The Big Bed

Spring Snow Storm

The best days for Linda are the days she gets up early (5:30 a.m.) and starts about her morning rituals (dog things, reading, prayer, coffee, shower...) and then finds out her morning classes are canceled.  Don't think she doesn't LOVE teaching, she says it's the most amazing full-time job ever, it's just she never has a lot of hours off in a row from anything (except when she is sleeping.)  Her first class isn't until 6:30 p.m. now.  Most people would go back to bed, but since we are all up and energized, she's thinking of maybe trying to take us for a walk before the snow gets deeper.  Both Chimi and I ran off the deck earlier without slipping down the stairs, so it won't be dangerous.  She wishes we had little paw boots to wear to keep our feet dry and warm.
As you can see, accumulation is only about 2-3", but the snow is still falling.  We also have the best back porch lights ever.  It was totally dark when she took this photo. The lights make it look like daytime.  She only keeps them on for us to see walking around the yard.  They are so bright the neighbors might complain.

UPDATE:  It's been steadily snowing since early this morning.  It's warm enough though that it's not sticking to the ground.
 We didn't do a walk since Linda would have had to carry me.  Neither dog would go outside.  She has been making us go off the deck every few hours to pee.  Around 8 a.m. she shoveled the deck steps and they are still not covered after 4 hours of snow.  Weird.  The local news said there are 10,000 people without power, but we are thankful it has not effected our house.  Linda has been cleaning, organizing and studying with her time off.  TKD is canceled today and she doesn't teach until 6:30 p.m.  A mini-holiday!


Sunday, March 24, 2013

Twins

Penny and her BFF wore matching dresses to church today.  They didn't even plan it!  Neither one of them were very impressed by it; but the parents, Nana and Aunt Tier were snapping away saying "Ah-Oooh... look how cute!"
They should remember this photo and plan on wearing matching dresses to their very first Formal when they are teenagers. 

Linda went to Wegmans for lunch today.  It's a combination grocery store/food court/bakery/Asian buffet/pizza place all in one.  She just had black bean soup because she got so overwhelmed by all the choices.  You could eat there every day for a month and never eat the same thing twice.
It took all her willpower not to go to the bakery and buy a piece of carrot cake to take home. 


Napping and Over Reacting

It's been awhile since I've posted a cuddly Chimi picture.  He actually puts himself in these positions, Linda doesn't arrange him that way.  He'll burrow all the way under the top blanket, then work his head up until it rests against her body under her arm.  He'll stare at just like this photo and fight closing his eyes for an hour.  Chimi is probably the most affectionate and gentle dog on the planet.  Linda always wonders what happened to him in those first weeks of life to make him so afraid of everyday objects and sudden movements.  The other day he was startled by the plastic trash bag that Linda was putting outside.  He is now quaking whenever she takes a new bag out to put in the bin. 

That is a cute picture of Chimi, but this is an even cuter picture of Penelope.  Her Mommy and Daddy have been taking her hiking with the mega-carry-me back pack Linda got them for Christmas.  Sarah said it was a beautiful day.  Pen is so comfy in her pack that she fell asleep!  Taylor has actually been running 5 miles with Penny on his back.  He said she LOVES!! it, smiling and laughing the whole way. 

When Linda saw this photo, she didn't think "Wow, look at that beautiful scenery and happy family!" She thought "ACK! You are standing too close to the water!"  How did she get so overprotective from being a Mom to being a Grandmother?  She would like to encompass Penny in bubble wrap or make her wear a helmet, elbow and knee pads while she plays.  Taylor used to jump off the deck into snow piles and ride his bike over homemade ramps.  She would just shake her head and keep making dinner.  In fact, when she posted the Noah pet farm pictures the other day, she can't believe she let him actually touch the farm animals. What if they had fleas or germs? What if a baby lamb nipped his fingers?  What if he fell in a pile of poop?  Yikes, she better chill.  Growing up, Linda would ride on busy streets in the back of a pickup truck, play on the train trestle over the river and drink right out of the old, rusty hose in her backyard. 

Saturday, March 23, 2013

E I E I O

Linda can't wait to take Penelope to the local Petting Zoo this Spring.  It was Noah's favorite field trip they ever took!  He was so excited by all the animals and wasn't afraid of any of them.  He loved the hay ride, baby goats and baby chicks best.  He could "mooooo" before he was even a year old!
video
Even though Penny is walking everywhere by herself, it would be better to wait a few months until she is a little steadier.  Almost all her books are farm animal books, so she'll feel right at home. Linda will make sure she wears her farmer-tractor overalls and John Deere shirt. 

Friday, March 22, 2013

Future Champion

Penny is already playing with Daddy's basketball.  She'll probably play center since both Mommy and Daddy are tall.
Penny enjoyed the Sports Award Dinner tonight at Linda's church.  She even clapped at the appropriate time.  There is a rumor going around that Penny ate a whole slice of pizza by herself!  It wasn't that long ago when her Daddy was in High School and was up on stage getting awards.

This was a photo from the year Tierney and Taylor had their Awards Banquet.
  
Linda got a much better picture this year of the kids up on stage.
Taylor is in the light blue shirt in the second row
The current Basketball Team won their National Championship 3 years in a row.  That's pretty amazing.  The boys also made 51% of their shots, which is kind of a big deal in high school basketball! 

Beautiful (and delicious) cupcakes. 


Thursday, March 21, 2013

Turn It Up!

Chimi went ballistic while Linda was watching these Howling Huskies on You Tube!  Tomorrow she is going to take a video of him while it plays on Linda's laptop.  He can match them howl for howl, and he's just a Chihuahua!   

Raggedy Anne and Dinner


Linda got a cute video of Penny playing with Raggedy Anne today.  She is pushing Raggedy around in her little wooden stroller.  When she runs into the entertainment system and then tries to turn the knobs, Linda says "NO" (which makes her cry for a second.)  Next she finds Taylor's basketball and says "b ball" or maybe "ba." The iPhone video doesn't always like Linda's Windows laptop, and it won't upload to the blog.  She is going to try to get it to upload to her private You Tube account, then upload it to the blog.  Penny also told Linda she had to use the potty by pointing to the bathroom door and saying "GA GA GA!"  As soon as Linda took her diaper off and sat her on the potty, she went pee!  What a smart girl!  (The video is uploading to You Tube, it might be at the end of the post.)

!
Linda decided not to give up her creative cooking attempts after the pizza disaster.   Tonight she hit a grand slam.  It doesn't look very good, but it tasted amazing.  The crust was home-made cheddar-jalapeno biscuits.  The next layer was sauteed onions and red peppers, diced jalapenos, then smashed kidney beans, corn, soy crumbles, salsa followed by jalapeno cheese on top.  (Can you tell Linda likes hot things?)  It was a baked, hot-gooey very yummy dinner! 

Yes!  It worked.  Linda uses that same big voice with us when she has to correct our behavior.  She sounds a little mean, but she really isn't...it's just her "I'm only saying this once" voice.  

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

The Twilight Microwave Zone

Now Linda's knows why she has been postponing the microwave shopping.  It's not because she didn't know what kind to buy or how much money to spend, its because its not really broken at all and she would have wasted her $$!  Sunday, the thing totally stopped working.  The display panel was blinking and saying something like "this microwave is broken" (totally paraphrased since she can't remember exactly what it said.)  The buttons didn't work, the light didn't come on and no amount of unplugging it/re plugging it in worked.  This afternoon, she just felt like she should try again.  You guessed it... everything came on, the clock asked to be reset and it works just fine!  She wants to find out if there is some kind of meter that can measure if any microwave laser type beams are shooting out to kill her.
If you know, would you email me:  Chalupa@live.com.  Thanks.  She probably won't use it until she finds out if its safe.

The Destroyer

A few weeks ago (it seems like months and months) Linda weaned Chimi off his beloved Woobie.  He has had some kind of Woobie since his newborn days.  He loves to nurse on a soft toy or blanket while he drifts off to sleep.  It was costing about $30 a month to replace the Woobies because he would totally destroy them.  If they had eyes, noses or ears, in 10 minutes they would be chewed off.  Squeakers were discovered and removed in the next 5 minutes.  It was ridiculous.  Finally when the toy was down to a rag, he would use it has his Mommy.  Linda decided that too much of the stuffing and fur was ending up in his belly (or being thrown up on the floor or pooped out) so she pulled the plug. 

Instead, she put a $10 fleece throw on his bed.  He was only allowed to use it during the overnight hours.  At first he was cuddling in it, then after a few days... he started gnawing away.  This morning, this is what she found when she opened the bathroom floor (she pulled it all off his bed)...
Seriously Chimi?  Do you have to destroy everything you love?
He ripped open a seam and pulled all the lining out!  Linda ripped the rest of it away from the blanket and now it's just a big rag. He was so ashamed when she chided him about it (he knew he was bad) that he found a good hiding spot on the big bed and wouldn't even come to breakfast.

"You can't see me"


1/2 Star Pizza and Still No Microwave


The pizza was even worse today.  Linda heated it in the toaster oven thinking that it would crisp up the crust and that the toppings would have had time to "meld" and actually taste better.  (Some things do taste better to Linda on the next day, like lasagna.)  After a few bites she threw it all in the trash.  There was a little Mac & Cheese left so she ate that along with a handful of semi-sweet chocolate baking chips as a chaser.  Not the lunch she was looking forward to after teaching two straight hours. There's always dinner.   We still don't have a microwave because she can't decide which brand to buy.  They cost anywhere from $49 to $1,000's of dollars.  The one we had was under $200, but it lasted less than 18 months before it totally broke.  Its always tempting to go with the low end/cheap models and then you regret it when you have to replace it.  Her old microwave lasted 10 years and might be still going to this day!  She gave it to her friend who didn't have a microwave when we got the over the stove unit. It was really expensive, so maybe that answers her question on which to buy.
This one is almost $2,000 

or go to Kmart and get one for under $50 ?


Happy Spring!

Today is the first day of Spring! 
Flowers make me happy
Swinging at the park is fun..

The slide, not so much.

Tuesday, March 19, 2013

One Star Pizza

The pizza turned out pretty terrible.  It looked amazing, but on a scale of 10 being the best pizza Linda ever ate and 1 being the worst, it was a 1.  All the ingredients were good, fresh spinach, mushroom and even thinly sliced mozzarella.  I guess using jarred pasta sauce and a pre-made crust was the downfall.  She'll eventually eat the leftover pieces, but not tonight.  After burning about 1,000 calories teaching her classes, she couldn't stand the fact that she had to drive home and actually cook something the old fashioned way.  (I know, the earlier post today bragged on what a Betty Crocker Linda was becoming.)  Instead, she stopped at a place called Moe's.  She got the kid sized burrito filled with tofu and veggies.  It was tasty, but she could only eat 1/2 of it.  Her stomach was a little queasy from working out so long and hard. 

Not her actually burrito.  She didn't get  the cool crayon soda cup.
Jerry took us for a long walk while Linda was gone.  I actually jogged a portion of the walk and even sprinted a few times!  I'm feeling so much better.  I just hope it lasts and I don't have another "episode" and have to go back to the Vet.  Linda would LOVE a weekend that didn't involve rushing me to the Dr. or emergency room.   

Chef Linda

Linda is realizing that day 3 of not having a microwave isn't nearly as bad as day 1.  You get used to using it every meal, like reheating lasagna in 90 seconds.  Then you can't imagine how you'll be able to wait (starving!) for the 30 minutes it takes the oven to warm it to the same temperature. Last night she made home-made baked mac and cheese, today she is making a pizza!  Fresh mozzarella, sauteed mushrooms/spinach and Boca meatless crumbles (to keep it vegetarian) and lots of Italian seasonings. 
Maybe Linda will have to start a food blog like Megan's The Red Spoon
Using the old fashioned way of heating food is making Linda slow down and actually enjoying cooking.  OK, it's only been a few days but maybe once we get a new microwave, she'll keep up the trend.  The downside is waiting to eat when you hungry, and it does make a lot more dirty dishes.  You can't just heat the leftovers up in the same bowl you stored them in.  Now if she can just control herself and not snack while the pizza bakes!