Random Blog A Musing Farf: April 2008

Tuesday, April 08, 2008


When I was a little kid, my parents would sometimes go away together and leave us at my aunt Meme's house for a long weekend.  I loved when they did this.  I mean, sure, I missed my parents, but staying at Meme's meant new toys to play with, cousins who always made me giggle and, as a kid, I mostly thought about the cabinet of treats.  

Meme's house has something very important that was lacking in my own home: a pantry filled with things like Vanilla Wafers, Fig Newtons and other yummy delights.  And the best part, it was all within reach of a small child!  I would happily reach in whenever the sugar urge struck me (which ironically, was less than at home where such things were often not in the house) and pull out a cookie or cracker.  A child's version of heaven.

Now, as an adult, I rarely keep cookies and such items in the house.  Like Mother, I have a horrible sweet tooth and if I had a pantry like Meme's, I would constantly be eating out of it and gain tons of weight (not to mention a very unhealthy lifestyle).  I am sure that one day, my child will prefer staying at relative's houses for the same reason that I loved visiting Meme.

I know that for my dogs, they are very happy that we are all living with Sister while the new apartment undergoes some renovations.  The love the air mattress that Sister's boyfriend (SuperRob) brought over and seem to be very content relaxing on her couch as well.  But, last night, for the first time, I realized that if I were to leave them alone with Sister for a weekend, they would likely not even miss me.  It would be just like when my parents left us at Meme's house.

Last night I met a new friend from my dog training class for a quick glass of wine (I dare you to judge me for it!) and some food.  We were having a blast and time quickly flew.  I looked at my watch, saw it was 9:30, the time I had promised Sister I would be home, hastily said goodbye and jumped into a cab.  As we sped toward Sister and the dogs, i figured I would call to check in and make sure that 1. Sister knew I was on my way; and 2. to ensure that the dogs were not missing me too badly (Cody will often cry when he gets home if Husband and I are not there).

"Hey, I am on my way in a cab, " I informed Sister when she answered.

"Ok," she replied.  "Can the dogs eat tuna?"

"A little bit is fine," I told her.

"Ok.  Bye," she said, abruptly hanging up on me. 

I wondered what was going and and when I walked into Sister's apartment, both dogs looked absolutely blissful.  Turns out, Sister had split an order of sushi with them and all three had gorged themselves on tuna rolls, tuna sushi and rice.  Neither dog looked particularly excited to have me home.

And this morning it hit me.  I had walked in immediately following the dogs being able to have all the treats they wanted and they gave me the same reaction I used to give my parents when they walked in right after my fourth Vanilla Wafer.  

I guess everyone (even dogs) need a Meme to spoil them occasionally.

Tuesday, April 01, 2008


It’s amazing how fast time has gone by this month. I don’t think I have ever been this busy at work and getting the apartment together feels like a never-ending process. But, we do have a slight update: We now have a (mostly) finished living room and the kitchen has a working microwave, oven, stove and sink. Sure, there is still no bathroom and Husband, the doggies, and I will be moving in with Sister for a week while the bathroom is being done, but there seems like there is an end in sight and for the first time, I think the apartment may be finished before the baby is born, which is really all I wanted.

Actually, as we get closer to having an actual baby (as opposed to a fetus) I alternate between feeling like a baby is going to be much harder than I think and feeling like I really will be a good mother. Tiki and Cody the wonder dogs (aka double Trouble) are a huge part of my parenting practice.

For example, the other day, I noticed that Tiki was peeing weird and took him to the vet. Initially, the vet said nothing was wrong and offered some antibiotics as a prophylactic (which I accepted) but insisted on more tests. Sure enough, it turns out the Tiki had kidney stones and I congratulated myself on knowing my baby well enough to insist on medical care, even when the vet said it was not necessary. Oh yeah. I can totally handle a human baby.

But then, as though he knew my confidence was soaring, Cody (who has been uncomfortable in the new apartment) developed massive separation anxiety and howls whenever we leave the apartment. A couple weeks after moving in, we left Tiki and Cody crated in the apartment while we had dinner with Photogenic Friends, who had just moved into their new apartment in Brooklyn. The night was really fun and when we got home, we were surprised to see a note on our door. Apparently Cody was crying all night and kept up the neighbor who loves below. (Of course, he left an anonymous note so it took us a while to figure out who was complaining). I worked really hard with him and finally figured we had progressed to the point where he and Tiki could be left uncrated in the apartment.

So, Sunday night, I left the dogs uncrated in the living room (blocked with puppy gates) and went to the movies with Husband for the first bit of relaxation all weekend. When we came home, both dogs greeted us at the door, having jumped the gates, and we noticed the trash had been torn apartment and so had the remains of good bags given to us at a party the previous evening. One or both dogs had eaten sugarless gum, chocolate, and oatmeal raisin bars. All three things are toxic to dogs and could be fatal, and my first reaction was to freak out. But, instead, I had Husband walk them (in case diarrhea was coming) and called Animal Poison Control. Following the instructions given by the vet over the phone, I induced vomiting in the dogs and went to bed. Ugh, I will be the worst mother ever and likely kill my child.

As I was retelling this story to a friend, she commented that, despite allowing the dogs to get into something dangerous to being with, I actually handled the situation well by being calm and just figuring out a solution to the problem. According to my friend, she screws up all the time as a mother and the trick is just fixing the problems she causes before they get out of control or cause real damage. That made me feel better.

So maybe I will be okay in a couple months. But then again, not sure how to remedy the fact that for the last month, I have been breathing in lead paint dust during renovations. Ah, the conflict continues…