Category Archives: Spinelli

Pooch Ponderings – Can we keep him?

Last night mom looked for Timmy so I could pee. Dad said we were both by the door. I love the door. Not the one that blocks but the one I can see through. Dad went over and got Timmy and put him in the room with my bed. Mom put my leash on and I was wiggling and wagging and couldn’t wait to go outside. There was a new friend out there!!!!! Let me see him mom let me smell him and play pleeeeeese!!!!

Mom told dad something must be out there cuz I was so excited. She opened the door and I tried to pull her down the sidewalk but she’s too strong darnit. Dad came to the door and mom told him she heard something but didn’t know if it was a person or not so dad came outside and then he said to get back inside and mom was gathering in my leash and holding it close and I couldn’t dilly dally like I usually do when she wants to go inside because oh man did she sound scared and I could feel her all tense and stuff through my stupid leash and she was pulling hard. I just wanted to meet my new friend. Oh well.

We came inside and mom and dad were giggling really funny and she hung on to him and asked what it was and dad just kept saying piggy. Piggy piggy down by my car. Mom kinda melted like I did on the bus thing at the school place and she was on the floor breathing hard and giggling and said where there’s one there’s twenty, oh boy twenty piggies, twenty friends!!! Dad knelt down and kept saying piggy and I looked out at Piggy. Weird name. Then Spinelli came to the door and Fi too and dad asked them if they saw the piggy.

A little while later I had lost interest but my stupid leash was on and mom was still on the floor asking dad how I was gonna pee so dad went outside for a bit and came back and said it looked clear. Mom said he had better go out with us so he did but I just stood on the sidewalk wondering where Piggy was. Also dad was right there and I hate to pee if anyone’s there. Dad walked down the sidewalk so I finally peed and then dad came back and mom kept saying her legs were jello whatever that means.

We came back in and mom took off my leash and closed the blocker door. Oh well. I guess Piggy isn’t my new friend.

Mom and dad were both still giggling and mom kept making funny noises and dad asked if she could smell it and she said no and I’m like what??? Piggy smelled awesome! Then mom said, “this time it really was a monster.” So was my friend’s name Piggy or Monster? Mom calles Timmy the monster sometimes. I’m so confused.

6 Comments

Filed under desert life, Doggy Diaries, Fi, Jayden, NaBloPoMo 2010, pooch ponderings, Spinelli, Timmy

Swiffer sweeps away domesticated blues

I strongly recommend the Swiffer Sweeper Vac and the Swiffer Wet Jet and let me tell you why.

I got the Wet Jet how long ago? Awhile ago. It works well, but I could never get my floors swept very well before I used it, and if you don’t sweep, it doesn’t work as well. It definitely doesn’t pick up all the hair and tiny pebbles and such, the things that end up on my floors. I end up with my hair, dog hair, cat hair, and tiny pieces of cat kibble since Spinelli likes to play with her food.

I tried sweeping into a corner and using the vacuum hose. I tried sweeping into a corner and using the dust pan. But all the hair would collect on the broom and just push everything further.

I looked for the Swiffer Sweeper Vac at Walgreens. I’ve been pining after it since Georgie told me she uses it and the Wet Jet on all her floors and that’s all she uses. Walgreens didn’t have it, but B spotted it at the grocery store and picked it up for me.

I think the Wet Jet was like $25 or so. The Vac is about $45. Sooooo worth it.

Awhile ago at Target, I bought a big box of pads for the Wet Jet and some refill cleaner, which by the way is non toxic. But I just haven’t used it much. I’ve pretty much given up on having clean floors since going blind and getting fatigued so quickly.

Today I finally got the Vac out. B bought it last weekend and put it together, then showed me how to use it. You actually charge it so no need for batteries. There is a little thing that flips down over where you attach the cloths that go on the sweeper part. The vacuum deal is right ahead of the cloth. There is this cup with a little filter that pop in and out right above the vacuum deal.

I did my kitchen, entryway and bathroom with it and you wouldn’t believe how full that cup got. And I just swept last week. I mean that cup was jam packed. I did it in bare feet and kept walking all over the floor as I swept and didn’t feel a thing on my feet.

Following it up with the Wet Jet was a cinch and now my floors feel sooooo clean! As clean as they’ve felt in a looooong time. I think I’ll do the wet paper towel test and have B take a look at it. You know when you spill and wipe up with a paper towel? I’m hoping the paper towel won’t be black. That’s the true test of clean floors.

I am in love with that thing. I’m sure there’s still grime on my floors from not being able to clean them properly, so if I do this every week, soon there won’t be a whole lot of cloths needed each week. I only used one and it didn’t feel all that dirty. I think that vacuum thing gets to most of the crap before the cloth.

As someone who fatigues easily, this thing is a breeze. It’s so lightweight. I was already tired before I set out to do my floors, and I was still able to do it.

Holy crap, I’m so in love with the combo of the two!

No, Swiffer did not ask me to write this. I am raving about a product just because I love it, which is kinda rare lol.

Coming soon, the Silicone Sally and Medicare nightmare.

3 Comments

Filed under blind tips, cool product, Spinelli, spoons

Pooch Ponderings and Kitty Tales collide

Hey everyone. Timmy and I have a story to tell you. First I have to start by saying that I got to go to the mall with Mom and Dude and it was fun. They showed me where the human relieving circle was and then went back to the door and when mom told me forward I took her right to it and got a kibble. She was all impressed that I took her to the big stall. Duh, we always use the big stall. Anyway so then we walked around some and a little human was petting me while I walked and I ignored him and Dude made us stop and mom made me sit and then she talked to the little human and then an old human came and got the little one and we could walk again. We went to a store and mom got something but I’m not allowed to say what. I guess a friend of hers is graduating college. Will she be a guide person? Hmmm. But I can’t say what mom got in case the human reads but we don’t think she reads. Anyway so that was fun. Then we left and Dude was telling mom all the stuff I did like going around people without bumping them and blocking mom by the weird hall so I could look and make sure nothing was coming out to get her.

So we get home and she takes off my harness and asks if I have to go outside and here’s where I’ll let Timmy tell you the rest.

Ok, so at first I didn’t like the dog thing. But he’s pretty cool. I’ve been telling him that he has to help me escape. So I came up with a plan and we were just waiting for the right time. So mom tells the dog that he needs to go outside and I hoped he’d activate the plan and sure thing, he did. Mom opened the big door and then the screen door and the dog usually walks right outside, then mom closes the big door because if she closes the screen, it’s easy for me to run out. But man, the dog did things perfectly. I had told him to divert and confuse mom, and he did just that. Instead of walking outside, he looked into the kitchen. That’s when I snuck by them. Mom started to close the door but then the dog decided to go outside so they came outside. I meowed, but I changed my voice a bit so mom wouldn’t be sure it was me, but I wanted to thank the dog. At this point, since he’s freakin cool, I’ll call him by name.

So Jayden is staring at me and not doing his business and mom is calling my name and asking Jayden if I got out. Like he’s gonna tell her, we’re partners now. I stare back at Jayden and then he finally goes and pees and they go back inside. Mom leaves the big door open and I can hear her calling for me in the house. I went and rolled around and around and got all dirty but damn it was hot, so I went back to the door. Jayden was laying there and I started meowing. Mom heard me and opened the door a crack and then Spinelli tried to copy me, damn copy cat. Mom pushed her back and reached for me but I escaped, so she came out and closed the door and I went to her cuz it was just too hot out. She dusted me off and told me I’m a bad cat and took me inside, then she had to make sure Spinelli didn’t get out so she felt her and grabbed Spinelli and Spinelli got mad.

Ok, I’m sick of typing, here’s Jayden.

Hahahaha so yeah, mom was not happy with Timmy. I was prancing around panting while mom was on the floor making sure all the cats were in the place. Then mom called Gamma and told her I aided and abetted the escape of timmy. Oops! But I want to stay in with Timmy cuz he plays with me. Mom’s all tired now cuz she’s been really tired this week and our little trick didn’t help. Sorry mom. I’ll cuddle next to you now and I won’t help Timmy next time. But it was sure fun to see him get in trouble hehehehe!

2 Comments

Filed under cats, Doggy Diaries, Gamma, guide dogs, Jayden, Kitty Tales, pooch ponderings, Spinelli, spoons, Timmy, weather, working dog

Doggy Diaries – Mother of all updates

As I was writing the title, I got a nudge from Jayden saying hey, what about me? Haha! He’s so good about letting me know when he wants some love. After some silly affection giving, he’s now curled up next to me. We’re gonna go for a walk in a bit.

Anyway, I haven’t updated in a bit, so I’m just gonna write whatever comes to mind.

Jayden had a big work day yesterday. We were going to the memorial service for the man in the fellowship in the afternoon, so I groomed Jayden in the morning and got some things done around the house. The only appropriate clothing I had was a long dark brown skirt with a brown colored print top. Well, nothing fits anymore, so the skirt was threatening to fall off. About a half hour before we were leaving, I took Jayden out to relieve, and Timmy ended up getting out. The big dog doesn’t scare him away from the door anymore. Luckily a neighbor was outside, and she helped me wrangle Timmy, all the while Jayden thought he was getting a visit, and I was worried about my skirt falling off haha! So I called Lish to see if she had any safety pins but she didn’t, so we left early to stop at Walgreens. I was able to work Jayden the whole time. He was such a champ! I was able to follow Lish because I could hear her shoes. Jayden didn’t get distracted or anything, and the regular clerks got a kick out of watching him.

We got to the church and had to park a ways and Jayden worked like a champ all the way to the door. There was a speed bump though, which he walked right over. We never talked about speed bumps at school. Is he supposed to stop for those?

Once it got crowded, I heeled Jayden and did sighted guide with Lish. An usher found chairs for us in the disability aisle, where Jayden wouldn’t get stepped on or be in the way. I had just told him to lay down when the priest said, please rise. Haha! That was the only time though. We stayed seated for the rest of it. Jayden was really good about laying there quietly, though he kept trying to put his head under the pew in front of us lol.

The service was really beautiful and very comforting. All the scriptures read where ones of peace and letting us know we are not alone. Though I am not religious, I do enjoy sermons like that. It wasn’t at all preachy, just very comforting and very spiritual. The eulogy was lovely, filled with tears and humor, and as a special request from the family, the priest said the Serenity Prayer. You could feel all the members of the fellowship let go at this.

After the service, we waited for everyone to clear out. It was huge, with a lot of people. Jayden stood there wagging at everyone and through sniffles, I heard little exclamations of cuteness. I think he was a comfort to people as they left. The usher came after everyone was gone and said he hadn’t been an usher with a service dog before, so it was a good experience for him.

We went to the reception room which was packed and there was food. Jayden did great. He was calm the whole time, though I just had him on leash. Most of my friends asked if they could pet him and they were all good about doing it calmly. Jayden just ate it up. I had one woman start petting him, and she is a woman I don’t get along with very well. “Please ask me before you pet him.” “Oh, why?” “Well, if he had ben working, that would have been like me grabbing your steering wheel.” “Oh! Clever, you should write an article.” “There’s lots of articles already written.” Lish said, “Yeah, most people just don’t read them.” That was the only ify experience.

We milled around awhile and I saw some of the other oldtimers I love and we talked about why I haven’t been to meetings, to which they were totally understanding, which warmed my heart. Those guys know me well enough to know that I’m filling my life with the program whether I’m in the rooms for an hour or not. It meant a lot to me that they didn’t lecture me about it, and they are men I really admire.

After we got home, Jayden did his usual after work routine of dropping to the floor on his back for a belly rub and romp session. Then he passed out haha. I talked to Carol for a bit before the game.

9-3 Rays over Yankees wooooo hooooooo! David Price was incredible and he got run support. Couldn’t have asked for more. We won the first game against the Yankees last year too, and they came back to win the next two, so we’ll see how today and tomorrow go.

I don’t have a whole lot new to report about Jayden. His work continues to be wonderful. We are having one issue, which will be a gigantic issue if we can’t get it fixed though. I tried calling GDB on Thursday but the phone was busy busy busy. On Tuesday, Dave and I were working on the route out of the complex, which had been a little difficult, because it’s not straight forward. There are two curbs I want him to target, but he was having other ideas. So Tuesday I got out the clicker. Fun! Dave hadn’t really seen clicker training before, and he enjoyed it a lot. After the final back chaining, starting from the beginning, Jayden targeted both curbs without issue. Yay! Then the trouble really started.

After the second curb ends, it’s a country road. That means a long straight road with no sidewalk. Asphalt right next to dirt. Jayden does not want to go down the road. We work it on the left, facing oncoming traffic. He doesn’t want to budge. Dave suggested trying the dirt, that maybe he would see that as safer, but no go. He does not want to go down the road. I wanted to end the day on a good note, so we crossed to the other side. He has no issue on that side. He goes no problem and again, we’re facing oncoming traffic. It’s exactly the same. There isn’t a lot of traffic and it’s not a dangerous road. So I don’t know what the issue is. The country road lesson at school was absolutely horrible, horrible. So bad that when I got back to the dorm I was in tears and had to call Kevin to get me out of a rage. I really tried not to let it transfer to Jayden, but what if it did? I’m afraid that’s why he’s hesitant. But then he’s fine on the other side. I’ve tried the GL and it’s the same. It’s not like he’s sniffing or distracted. Until he masters that, we can’t leave the complex on foot. I’m sure I’ll get through to Grad Services soon, but does anyone have any suggestions?

After we got home after that, I took Jayden’s harness off and let Dave finally say hi. He is definitely a dog person haha! I have never seen Jayden go so crazy hahaha!! Bouncing around and running as far as his long leash would let him. It was really fun.

I did the same after my workout on Wednesday, let Lisa and Glenn say hi to him and he was so happy.

Oh, yesterday Lish said Jayden just looks so happy when he’s working. That made me very happy to know. She said his tail was going the whole time and he was smiling. Yay!

He’s still doing great at home. He’s free except at night, where he’s still in his kennel. He lost his tug rope privilege for awhile though. I had it on a tall dresser, and he actually went and got it down and was chewing on it. Noooo. Haha! So it’s put away for now, and he’s rediscovering his tug ring, goughnut and kong.

He loves to chase after Spinelli. I let him briefly until she starts hissing. After I stop him his heart is racing and he’s panting hehe!

We’ve definitely gotten to the place I’ve heard some handlers say as, he’d crawl into my skin if he could. We are peas in a pod, love to be together. He’s rarely away from me unless he hears something outside and goes to check it out. After I shower he comes into the bathroom like, I knew you were there but I couldn’t see you. Haha!

I just love him and everything about having a guide dog. I can’t wait to go for a walk. We’re just gonna go walk the complex, since he hates the road leading out, so I won’t try that alone yet.

I think that’s about all. Oh wait! I lied!

Thursday was laundry day and I had two loads since I hadn’t done it the previous Thursday. So first thing in the morning I got everything sorted and Jayden and I took the first load down. He did great! I’ve taught him to always target the mailboxes when we go that way, not just so he knows where the mail is, but because it’s a landmark for my orientation. I paid extra attention to my inner distance meter so I’d know when we were close to the laundry. There isn’t always noise of machines and smells of detergent, so I’ve realized I have to know how far we’ve walked in case he misses the door like he did the time we got lost and had to call for help. I put the first load in the wash and we came ack home, no problems. We left again a little later for the second load and the laundry swap, and he did great again. We came back home, I took his harness off and then realized I hadn’t put a washer sheet in the second load. Arg. Harness back on, back to the laundry room, except I use the front load washer and you can’t open it once it’s started. Arg. So my clothes got a good soaking haha! We came back, then went down again, to restart the washer and bring the dry clothes back. No problems, except some neighbors distracted him, but since I’m now getting better about being aware of how far we’ve walked, I cought it quickly and got him back on track. Then we had to go back to swap the load to the dryer, walk back home, then back down to get the last load. It was exhausting hahaha! But I think we’ve got the laundry down hahahaha!!!!

Oh and also on Tuesday after the country road thing, we did the route down to the office which I hadn’t done yet. I wanted Dave there, even though its a pretty straight forward route. Well, we didn’t need him once. As we approached the office, I heard people and a very aggressive sounding dog. So did Jayden. He stopped dead and didn’t move. When he does this, I now know he is checking out a situation. When he’s distracted, his body moves and his head is going back and forth. When he’s concentrating, he doesn’t move a muscle. Once he could tell the dog was contained, he continued. I absolutely love how cautious he is. He does that with cars too, even if they aren’t too close. He won’t move until he knows what they’re doing. I love it. I feel so safe with him.

I told Dave I wasn’t surprised the office route went fine, because it’s straight forward, a sidewalk to follow the whole way. Dave laughed and said, no it’s not. Don’t you remember accidentally following a branching sidewalk into the parking lot with your cane? Oh yeah. I forgot there are a lot of possible paths that Jayden could have taken. But he kept on the straight route, and really that’s how he was trained anyway, not to turn unless I tell him. I still feel good about that walk though. There are lots of flowers and bushes along the way and he didn’t sniff once.

Ok, I think that’s really it. Yeah. Unless I remember something else haha!!!

7 Comments

Filed under baseball, Doggy Diaries, dogs, fellowship, GDB, guide dogs, Jayden, jayden quirks, laundry, misty eyes, no no sightie, Orientation and Mobility, sobriety, Spinelli, Timmy, transitioning, working dog

Doggy Diaries – No more blogging

I’ve decided to stop blogging. It’s just not fun anymore. There’s nothing to write about anyway. And I really don’t think anyone enjoys reading anymore. So This is the last post. For those of you have my email address, you know where to find me. I think I pretty much need to give up the computer entirely. I just spend too much time on it and it’s pulling me away from life. I think I’ll take a class in blind underwater basket weaving. Or maybe I’ll start a line of crochet dog collars. I think that would be a much better use of my time. I have just been sucked into technology a little too much. In fact I think I’ll donate the computer and all my tech gadgets to a shelter. Good bye technology! I think I’ll find a clay hut somewhere in Nevada. And grow my own food.

Hahahaha ok did I have you going at all, until it got rediculous? I used to be really good at April Fool’s jokes, but there’s not much I want to joke about anymore, if that makes sense. Not in an “I’m depressed” way or anything. Just pulling jokes like “I’m pregnant” or “B and I are breaking up” stuff like that, is just not stuff I want to joke about. I don’t even really want to joke about giving up technology, but it was just a whim and I couldn’t help it. So hope I didn’t jinx myself there.

Anyway, I looked back and I haven’t written a diaries post since Sunday. Whoa. Maybe that’s what gave me the idea to play a joke about stopping blogging. I don’t even really know why I haven’t written a post. Maybe nothing huge jumped out at me. Jayden and I are just settling in so nicely that it’s all becoming a well oiled routine.

He was a little off his game at Gamma’s on Sunday. I didn’t read my last post to know if I mentioned that. I think he was excited to see his friend Charlie next door. I let him out back to do his business and then let him off leash. Gamma said he was eating something in the corner, but he was probably just sniffing. When I called, he didn’t come. I called again and he didn’t come. So Gamma had to direct me to get to him and the leash went back on. Then Charlie came out and I didn’t have my hitch hiker’s grip on the leash, and Jayden slipped right out of my grip to run to the fence. He couldn’t get out, but again didn’t come when called. So I went and got him and took him back inside. He had also blown the curb at Walgreens, and the step at Gamma’s. When we got home, he guided me flawlessly to my door and B was relieved, because he was worried I’d gotten a broken dog. I had to laugh at that and say I wasn’t worried at all. He’s still a very young dog, and he’s going to have days like that.

He knew I wasn’t pleased, and made up for it on Monday when we went to Saavi. He was perfect. Nothing less than perfect. He took me right to the bus and found a chair, then when we got there, the bus couldn’t pull up right in front of the door. Last time that happened was when he blew the curb and ran me into a wall trying to go into a different door. Not Monday. He stopped at the curb and then took me right in the front door. I had decided to start having him target the counter first before heading back down the hall and I said counter and pointed in that direction and he went right to it. When was he taught “counter”? I didn’t do it. Then he knew to stop at the ladies room first, then he knew to take me right to the gym, and he proceeded to go right to his spot and wait for the mat, then he lay right down and was perfect while I worked out.

After the workout, we had some issue finding a seat in the lobby, only because people don’t really know how to communicate very well when it comes to a person being guided by a dog. I think most of the clients use canes, so it’s a little different. Finally we found a good seat and waited for the van and when my name was called, I said “outside” and he took me outside and boarded the van. When we got home he took me right to the door. So it was like he knew he hadn’t quite been great on Sunday haha!!

Tuesday Dave came over to work the route down to the store again. It’s slow progress, but it’s getting there. That afternoon, I had him on leash to take him outside for relieving and he stopped right by the door with his body in front of me, facing the kitchen. I reached out, and had he not done that, I would have smacked the wall that juts out from the door. He wasn’t even working! I think he really knows I’m blind now, especially since now that he’s free in the house, I run into him sometimes hahaha! I was just amazed that he put his body between me and that wall. Wow.

Wednesday was Saavi again and again it was perfect. It was funny because when the van took me home, I could tell the driver hadn’t stopped right by our walkway. I asked if we were in front of the sidewalk and the driver said, no, I didn’t want you to have to go over those parking curbs. To which I laughed and said we do it all the time, my dog stops for them. I took the driver’s arm until we reached our sidewalk because I couldn’t be sure where he had stopped the van.

Afternoons we’ve just been relaxing with a play session here and there. It’s been fairly nice out, so I can leave the screen door closed and he loves to lay there and look out. Play is getting a lot more fun now that he knows he’s ok to be a dog when we play. After our nightly play sessions, (I play with him about eight every night to get things moving for the nightly relieving) he’ll get tired and just lay down and I lay down with him for awhile and we cuddle. It’s sooo nice.

We still go out in the afternoons and get the mail, or I let him walk around on a long leash, or I’ll take him out and groom him. He sits right down in the sun and lets me groom him for quite awhile, which is good since he’s throwing his winter coat.

Now that he’s free in the house, he’s experimenting with the cats to see if he can play with them haha! I always supervise when I hear him going after Spinelli, because she hisses. But she doesn’t hide, she just jumps up somewhere out of his reach.
I’m still working on the last bit of dog proofing, though it might not even be necessary. Even with freedom he hasn’t gone after cat food. Today I’ll be elevating it though. Why tempt him? I received by pet placemats yesterday from Amazon. I’m not doing that thing where I get credit if you buy something I link to. I thought about it, but I worry about any kind of income affecting my benefits. But, I had to link to these, because they’re really cool. I was just gonna get normal plastic placemats to put the cat food up on the table, but I found these and they sounded cool. There weren’t any reviews yet; I was the first last night. So I took a chance. They are hard plastic, about the size of a small serving tray. They have rubber all around the edges, and the surface has raised bumps. One tray will hold two cat dishes or one large dog dish. I got four of them, and will probably only use three. I have Jayden’s water dish on one on the floor since I’m free watering him now. They are going to work great for containing any spilled food or water. I haven’t gotten the baby gate yet, but I’ll review that when I get it.

Aside from those, I want to get a covered trash can for the kitchen, though he hasn’t bothered the trash. Again, why have a temptation? No sense in getting him in trouble for doing something natural for a dog, if he ever decides to forget his manners.

Speaking of his manners, I heard from the mom of his primary raiser today yay! I had an email from her waiting when I got up and was so happy. I was really close to calling GDB and asking them to let the raisers know they could contact me haha. It was so awesome to be able to write her and tell her how awesome Jayden is and fill her in on all the amazing stuff he’s done. They did such an amazing job with him. He has adjusted so well to house freedom and I know that’s all in the raising. I got all the qualities I didn’t even know I wanted. I pointed her to the blog and told her feel free to go check in on how we’re doing. So hopefully they find some times to come read. They are a very busy family, and Jayden’s primary raiser is finishing up high school. She has over a 4.0 GPA, wow! And she’s already raising her second puppy. What an amazing woman she’s going to be. Well, she’s already a woman, but you get my drift. It’s such a joy to hear about really good young people. I’m so grateful to know that family; just another blessing Jayden has given me. It will be a joy to watch his primary raiser as she goes on her next adventure after high school, and her little sister will probably be the next in the family to be a great kid. They must have great parents. The mom is really awesome and I just liked them all so much. I’m so glad they got in touch.

I think that’s about it. Definitely need to write longer posts when I get in a slacking mode on the diaries haha! I think Jayden knows Thursdays are our day off because he’s been enjoying napping on the couch all morning. Back to work tomorrow love, don’t get to used to being lazy. =D

As for me, I’m doing pretty well. The allergies have been more manageable with the Neti Pot. I definitely recommend doing it in the shower if you can, because I think the added warmth of the water on my face after I do it really helps stuff drain. My workouts were great this week. Muscle memory has kicked in and I’m right where I was before I left. I went a little farther on the treadmil on Monday. 1.75 miles in thirty minutes. My energy levels have been much improved since getting back to my workouts, so that’s a huge relief. I can’t really say I’ve had a bad spoon day. *knock on wood*

I’ve been doing laundry on Thursdays, but I don’t have any quarters. Darnit. It’s such a bummer to not be able to do laundry today. Man, I’m so disappointed. 😉

It’s pretty nasty out today. It’s chilly with a sixty percent chance of rain. I think the rest of the day might be a crochet day. I haven’t gotten the yarn yet for the puppy pool winners. I asked Georgie today if she could take me to Michael’s sometime soon and she was like, yeah but I need to talk to you about something. Oh? Yeah, we’ll need to take the truck. Ok, that’s fine. I know Jayden is really good but I have leather seats and the truck is just better for dogs. Ok, that’s fine. Haha she was all nervous about telling me she didn’t want Jayden in her car. I’m totally fine with that though. In fact I like trucks because I feel safe in them. Then she said we’ll have to park far because the truck is big and she doesn’t like getting close to other cars. I said, man, exercise? We hate exercise. Haha! Both of us love our workouts. We also talked about my friend’s baby shower on the 25th. I was a little nervous about having Jayden around a lot of strangers. It’s one of those new coed showers, so there will be lots of people. We decided it’ll be best if I tell B I need him to go. He won’t be thrilled, but I’ll feel better having his eyes there for Jay and I’s first party. So I’ve gotta hustle on that blanket. Only two more rows and then two rows of edging, so I should have plenty of time. Especially once I put on the iPod and get to work. I’m nearing the end of ‘My Sister’s Keeper’. Goooooood booooooook. In fact I think I’ll edit, publish, take Jay outside, see if he wants to play, and then get out the book and crochet. Perfect sounding day to me!

13 Comments

Filed under Amazon, cats, cool product, crochet, Doggy Diaries, Gamma, gratitude, guide dogs, Jayden, puppy raisers, Spinelli, transitioning, weather, working dog, workouts

Nothing post

I’m bored. There were only two new blogs this morning, so I’m already caught up. Everyone is sleeping, meaning B and Jayden are sleeping. So the only thing to interact with is my computer, but even that is boring. I could read, I’ve gotten into a routine with reading and I only read at night. Sometimes I’ll read during the day when I crochet. Oh. I could crochet. Hmmm. Eh. Don’t feel like it. I really need to get to Michael’s and get yarn for the two blankets and the scarf I need to make for the puppy pool winners. When is that gonna heppen. I need a girl who has some free time who knows about yarn. Hmmm.

My allergies are really bad today. It was pretty windy yesterday, so I was expecting this. Technically, I could take the allergy pills that make me stoned, since I don’t have anything on the agenda today. Saturday’s are now my only lazy day. I’ve been taking just one allergy pill in the afternoons when I’m in for the day. A zyrtec in the mornings, but they aren’t really helping. I wouldn’t mind, except my ears are being affected and that really, really scares me. I’m pretty sure it’s just allergies, but the crazy in my brain tells me, what if it’s not? I wish I had never watched ‘Hillary and Jacki’ about the cellist Jacqueline Dupree who had MS. In the movie, she loses a lot of her hearing. I don’t know if that really happened or if it was just done for dramatic effect. She ends up turning the volume up way loud when she’s listening to classical music. I don’t want to know if it’s true, so please, no one comment me about that. If hearing loss happens with MS, I don’t want to know, so please, no one say anything about it. My neurologist said don’t get online. So I don’t. I know enough about it to manage it, but I don’t want to know about the what ifs. Drives me nuts when people are like, oh I know someone with MS and they’re in bad shape. Don’t tell me these things.

Holy crap how did I get off on that? Yikes. Guess it’s a fear that’s been in the back of my mind.

Timmy and Spinelli are playing way back in the spare room and Timmy keeps doing his crazy play meow. He sounds like he’s in pain when he does that. Silly cat.

Jayden is asleep next to me on the couch with his head on my leg. Cute! I never want to move because I don’t want to disturb him, so I’ll stay uncomfortable until he moves lol. B and I do the same thing with the cats too. Think they’re spoiled? You bet.

Hopefully I’ll make it to Gamma’s tomorrow. I didn’t go last week with the stupid allergies.

B’s computer is really loud. Geez. I’m so used to laptops being so quiet that a loud desktop is really annoying. On the rare occasion that it’s off, it’s so nice and quiet in here.

I heard a noise earlier that could have been rain but I don’t think rain is forecast. It was probably more wind. I’m really not a huge fan of spring, and the reason is because I know summer is around the corner. I’m opposite of cold weather folk. They’re all excited and I’m getting ready to hibernate. It’s really beautiful out, but the pool water will be too cold. So you can’t go swimming. When the pool water is warm enough, it’s sweltering outside, so getting too and from the pool makes you sick. I wish the pool was heated so it would feel nice right now. How I’d love to get in the water and get some good sun with it’s happy vitamin.

I got the wrong thing in my grocery order yesterday. Carol had been telling me about these Jimmy Dean breakfast bowls with all kinds of yummy stuff that you pop in the micro so I got what I thought was that but I ended up with this bag so I asked B and he read the instructions and you have to add eggs and cheese and cook in the skillet. Yeah, how bout no. So I’m either gonna give to to Carol or else get eggs and cheese and have her make it here for us to split. Everything else in the order seems right so that’s good. It’s nice to have food in the house again.
Bored bored bored. I want to play with Jayden or something but it’s quiet time pretty late here on weekends. B always says not to worry but I can’t help it.

I finished ‘Pretties’ the other night but I can’t go get ‘Specials’ yet because it would put me below my money cushion for the month. I really, really need to look into free books. But I like to put them on my iPod and I think all the free stuff only works with Daisy players or Victor. Not sure. The last time I looked at the library site, it was going to be a major pain to get it all to work with the Apple stuff.

I’m out of coffee now, so I’m gonna have to move Jayden’s head.

Wow Jayden actually moved after I got up. Usually when his head is on my leg and I move, I come back and have to slide back in under his head lol. I was thinking about yarn when I got my coffee and it’s the one thing I can’t order online. I tried looking online, but of course there’s no descriptions because they have pictures. And of course you can’t tell what the yarn looks like because it’ll have names like amish sunset or something. Ok maybe not really amish sunset, but you get my drift. And I have very specific ideas in my head for these projects. I miss when Chupa was here and we went yarn shopping. I have two other girls, Georgie and Lish, who know about yarn, but they are both full time students and very busy. Man, when am I gonna get yarn. I want to get these three projects done and shipped before winter. I’m just gonna have to ask one of them to make some time please.

Oh yeah so since I couldn’t get ‘Specials’, I started ‘My Sister’s Keeper’ last night. I can tell it’s going to be an intense read. It’s cool though, cuz there are like six different narrators. So you have different narrators for different characters, both male and female. I read one other book like that long ago. I think it was called ‘The House at the End of the World’ or something. It was really good. It had four different narrators. Really makes it fun.

I think I’m running out of nothing to write about. Funny how nothing becomes something when you just let words pour out. When I write these nothing posts, I have nothing in mind, but stuff comes out. Weird.

I want some waffles but I’m lazy. I’ve also got some breakfast sandwiches I could just throw in the micro. I’m really trying to be better about breakfast. On days where I’m gonna go be active, I have my instant breakfast with soy milk. But you have to be active after that or it’ll just make you gain weight. I mean everything will make you gain weight, but especially the instant breakfast since they’re made for active people who don’t have time to eat right? Yeah. I’m out of them anyway. I couldn’t tell on the website if they were packets or the actual drink so I didn’t order any.

Well, I guess I’ll edit and go forage for food as Carol says.

6 Comments

Filed under Audio books, cats, coffeeholic, crochet, desert life, Gamma, Jayden, num num food, puppy pool, random stuff, rant, Spinelli, The Nothing, Timmy, weather, where is everyone?

Doggy Diaries – No title

Eh, can’t think of a title. Kinda brain foggy at the moment. But wanted to blog since it was a cool day.

Jayden and I got all ready for Dave this morning and he arrived promptly. It was finally time for the nice walk in the old historic neighborhood where I started off my cane training. I was excited to get there, to take Jayden for that walk everyone says is so great. That first walk with a guide dog that I just never really felt I got. Turns out, I get my walks right here at home. It’s still so fun to watch him continue learning. The walk in the neighborhood was nice, don’t get me wrong though. We just walked. Dave let me decide where to go. So I just turned and crossed as I felt like it. It was so cool! Some of it was familiar from the old cane days, like these alley ways that are landmarks, and from these big bushes and such. Jayden tried to stop and sniff every so often, but I didn’t need the Gentle Leader. About halfway through the walk, his guide work started getting a little sloppy. Then he took me straight to a grass yard. Ah. LOL! Nope, not here. Don’t want him relieving on grass, since it’s hard to find in the desert. In fact, a grass lawn could send me on a rant about water conservation, but I won’t go into that.

Dave said there was a dirt patch nearby. He’s been there with guide dogs before lol. We had to cross a street to get there, and Jayden wasn’t targeting the up curb because there was more grass. Finally we made it up on the sidewalk to the dirt and when that harness came off, he let it go lol.

Then I stopped at a street crossing and said, you know what sucks? What? I need a human relieving ciercle. Hahaha!!! Normally the amount of limiting fluids is fine for our lessons, but I find that since I walk a lot faster with Jay, it activates things for me just like for him hahahaha!!!

So we made our way back to the car a different way and when we were around the corner, I heard a roar. Growing louder. Vibrating the air around me. Filling my chest with it’s rumble, making my heart beat fast, excitement bubbling up inside, about to burst. I halted Jayden, growing excited, starting to jump up and down.

You’re probably thinking, what on earth? What the heck got her so excited? The Thunderbirds, that’s what. There’s an air show this weekend. Gamma told me this morning. I knew that sound. I haven’t heard it since going blind. I was yelling to Dave, that’s The Thunderbirds!!! He confirmed it. It was sooooo awesome. They’re practicing today, so I’ve heard them all day. My dad and I used to go whenever there was an air show, and I love them. So I was really excited. I think it was good too, because it was really loud and could have frightened Jayden, but I was so thrilled that he didn’t even mind the noise.

We got back to the car and I thought my need of the restroom had cut our lesson short. But it hadn’t. We’d been out an hour and had walked several blocks. Really? It’s so fast with Jayden, that I lose all concept of time. I was thrilled to discover we had done so much. I was also getting tired.

So Dave dropped me off and there was a box outside my door. Poop bags!!! Hahahaha!!!

Jayden pretty instantly fell asleep once we were inside. Oh yeah, I finally had some worry alleviated about Jayden’s breathing. I kept asking Dave about it, because it seemed weezy. He said no, Jayden was a very content dog. He said his dogs sound like that too.

So since Jayden was passed out, I called Carol and talked with her awhile and then I just settled in to read. I didn’t even feel like crocheting.

I was checking email though, and found an invitation to join another choir. I’ll discuss that later. I’m gonna do it though, but it deserves it’s own post.

Jayden’s dinner time was drawing close, so he stood by me with his nose on my leg lol! I finally fed him, took him out, and then harnessed him up to go get the mail.

I’ve been waiting for a car to be in the spot that we pass through, to see what he’d do, and I finally got my wish today. I told him left and he pointed me left and stopped. Car! Kibble. Then I said, ok, got it, forward. I wondered what he’d do. He walked me right around the car to the curb. I was doing a moving right but I don’t even think he needed it. Then he nailed getting to the mailbox and sat patiently while I looked inside the empty box. As we were leaving, a man was walking through and said hi and Jayden just ignored him, intent on getting me home. He was hesitant to walk up to the back of the car but I prompted him and said to show me the car. Kibble! Then he worked us around it and straight to the door.

I can’t explain it, but I sense a change in him now on this route. How I feel it, I don’t know. A confidence. A bounce in his step. Handlers, do you know what I mean? I can feel his happiness. I can feel that he’s thrilled that he knows where to go and how to get there. It’s just so cool! Maybe that’s why just the mailbox route is more thrilling to me than the neighborhood was today.

Tomorrow we’re doing a Best Buy trip. I want a Dyson. Enough messing with cheaper vacuums. I want a Dyson. They don’t lose suction. *Insert snobby British accent*.

Oh, Spinelli is laying on my leg and Jayden is just beneth us. The cats are doing fine now. No more hiding. Yay! Well, just as I was bout to end this post, Jayden stood up and Spinelli hissed and took a swipe at him. She can’t be doing that. She has front claws. I told her no and pushed her away. She just did it again. Urgh. I jinxed us lol!

4 Comments

Filed under cats, Choir, cool product, Doggy Diaries, Gamma, guide dogs, Jayden, relieving, Spinelli, transitioning, working dog

Doggy Diaries – What a lucky dog

I teased Bad News Ben about him saying “what a lucky dog” in a tone of voice that didn’t sound very lucky. He’s on the lecture cds they sent to review before I went to school, and he ended up being one of the trainers in my class, though not my primary trainer. He would say “what a lucky dog” at the exact right moments after I teased him about it, either while I was already laughing, or when I needed a pick me up, and he was also a big help to me while I was in class.

So yesterday I was going to go out with Dave and I was really looking forward to it. I kept thinking about all the things we could do, and finally decided that I wanted to go back to the beautiful historic neighborhood where we did a lot of my cane training. I thought a nice relaxing walk with Jayden and Dave was just what I wanted. So I got us all ready and we waited. Dave was late so I called him. I asked if we were meeting and he asked if anyone had called me. No. He’s ok, but he was involved in a car accident on the way to work. He wasn’t hit, but a tire rim flew off a truck and shattered the window behind his head. Ick. He went to the scene to give first aide and then waited to give a statement as a witness.

He told me this and then said he could come get me and go to Saavi but it was really all he was up for. I said no, you’re shaken, just take it easy, and he was grateful one of us was thinking clearly lol. I told him to go have a stiff drink and get pampered by his wife. We hung up and I thanked God that Dave was ok. I think I’d have a nervous breakdown if he got hurt. He was a huge source of strength to me while at school, knowing I was coming home to his mild manner and smooth temperment to continue training with Jayden.

I felt bad that I got Jayden all ready and then we weren’t going anywhere, so I took him out for more patterning. Once again, I should have quit while ahead, but we were working something really easy and I didn’t see the potential for getting lost. Ha! We ended up on the wrong sidewalk, my bad, should have noticed the veer or rather acted on it when I noticed it but I’m really working on trusting Jayden. Once again, I heard a person, once again, I tried to figure it out, once again, I asked for help, once again, I didn’t have my cell phone. I think I need kibble reward or something to remind me hahaha!!!

So we came back and I called Kevin to see about going to Petco for a kennel. He was free in the afternoon, yay! So he came and got us and we stopped at Walgreens and I worked Jay from the truck inside and he did great. Coming out, there was a dog distraction. Seriously, why all the sudden is everyone out with their little yip yips?

We got back in the truck and when we got to Petco, I did sighted guide in the parking lot since I don’t know it. As we neared Petco, Jay was pulling. Gentle Leader time. When he pulls so hard he gags because I’m correcting him, it’s a good indication that the GL is needed.

The Gentle Leader is a bridle looking thing that goes around his snout and under his ears. The leash gets hooked to it and the collar at the chin. He has full use of his mouth but even so, legally the GL is a muzzle, so if you have a GL and someone tells you to muzzle your dog, pop on the GL and that’s your muzzle, then laugh all the way to the pet store knowing your dog can still use his mouth tee hee! It’s a gentle way of keeping him focused, hence the name. As soon as it was on, he was a different dog.

We went to the kennels and no one was around so Kevin got on the ladder and brought me kennels one by one.

Jayden, inside. Peaks head in. Nope mom, too small. He went through a few and then found the right one. Went in and turned around. So Kevin went and got a sales clerk to verify and she said yep, right one. She helped me find a soft bed for inside.

Then I wanted to get the Kong cookies that Mimi told me about so we went and found those, and I picked up another Nylabone, beef flavour. I want my boy to have variety. I was feeling sizes and picked the one I thought was the right size.

We checked out and the clerk asked me if Jay could have a treat, which I declined. I was glad he asked. Kevin was bringing in the kennel and he said, “what a lucky dog” hahaha!!!!

We got it all set up in my room and Jayden went in and settled down. We watched from the doorway and Kevin said Spinelli jumped on top of the kennel, then looked in the door and took off haha!!

After Kevin left, I put the Kong cookie in and Jayden went nuts. He had it out in about 25 minutes. I felt him at one point, and after he had gotten the cookie broken, he actually got on his back, held the Kong in his paws, and tipped the cookie into his mouth. Wow. When he got the last piece I was like a proud mom who’s kid finally figured out that equation.

So I think it was a fun day for Jayden. It wore me out, but I still managed a good game of tug with the rope Mimi got him.

We also had some excitement when a neighbor needed to break into his house. Somehow the security latch gotlatched from inside and they were locked out. I asked Brian if he had seen the guy, did he really live there haha. Finally they called maintenence and they told him just to break it and they’d fix it. It took a hammer and my mom’s old railroad tie to bust it open. Crazy!

On the topic of relieving now lol. I’m sure this is fascinating. I know other handlers and raisers will get a chuckle or at least appreciate it though hehe. At school, we fed and watered first and then took the dogs to the relieving circle, where we had to do this dance to get them to circle. It was distracting for the dogs because we were all out there so it usually gook at least 5 minutes, sometimes ten if they didn’t go, to make sure they didn’t have to.

Here, Jayden hates the landscape rocks, but he knows that’s where he needs to go. If he walks on the rocks, I know he’s gonna go and he goes quick and then gets right off the rocks. This is fab, because we’re out there thirty seconds and if he gets off the rocks, I know he’s done.

I also take him out before feeding. He is going an extra hour now without going outside, now that we’re home. Well maybe thirty minutes to an hour longer than he did at school. He always has to pee pretty bad and how can he enjoy breakfast? I know I know, labs eat no matter what. But once at school, he had to go so bad he hardly even got excited as the food came.

So I got up this morning took him out and he had a loooooong pee then jumped off the rocks. I took him in and fed him, and our routine has been that after he eats, I loop his long leash around the couch leg and I hold his Nylabone a bit and then begin my waking up process. Well today after feeding, I walk to the couch and sit down and he won’t budge. I pull his leash a little and he makes the strangest noise. I interpreted it as, MOM!!! NO!!!! I NEED TO GO BACK OUTSIDE!!!! So I took him out where he got on the rocks and made a deposit hahaha!!!

I’m so glad I’m reading him right.

So we go in and I tied him down and give him the new Nylabone which is huge lol! I misjudged the size. It’s beef flavored and huge. He loves it! I got on the computer and he chewed, then he stopped and put his head on the couch, his cue for please let me up. So I let him up and he lays for five minutes, then puts his two front feet on the floor with his butt and back legs on the couch and chews the bone some more haha!! I don’t allow the bone on the couch. Then he was done again and asked to be let on the couch, where he has been happily snoozing while I do my computer thing.

I think we’re definitely in a routine now. Now to get adjusted to the weekend, where we will need to be quiet until noon while B is home lol. I’ll probably take him for a walk when he starts looking at me like, ok I napped, you got caught up on that white thing, now what?

I spoil him and I love it. What a lucky dog.

5 Comments

Filed under cool product, Doggy Diaries, dogs, fellowship, guide dogs, Jayden, jayden quirks, mom, num num food, plugs, relieving, silly girl, Spinelli, transitioning, working dog

Doggy Diaries – Peanut butter Kong

Jay’s raisers said his favorite treats were peanut butter and bananas. I have no bananas. Yes, we have no bananas. Sorry, memory there. Anyway, I have peanut butter and Aunt Mimi and Cousin Cabana got Jay a Kong. Jay has been sleeping most of the day and I’ve been laying around listening to Duma Key, Stephan King at his finest if I may say so. I got up at one point and Jay popped up out of a dead sleep and I knew he had to go out so I took him out. Then I remembered the Kong. So I put just a smear of peanut butter on my finger, not much at all, rubbed it inside the Kong and added three kibble. He’s been enjoying it for about fifteen minutes now. I know he got two of the kibble but I’m not sure if he got the third one. I’ll take some kibble out of dinner to compensate. I’m also cutting his food by a quarter cup because the vet said a lot of dogs get obese when they get home because they don’t work as much as they do at school. I don’t want an obese dog, so I’m gonna pay close attention.

Some weird noises come out when they chew a Kong haha! I keep having to stop and check him.

Timmy is all over me as I write this lol!!! He’s rubbing his head on my face lol too cute.

Spinelli let me say hi without hissing and she actually purred, came out and ate and then hid again.

I didn’t realize how tired I was until about ten o’clock this morning. Jay was fast asleep so I put a pillow down and lay down next to him with my iPod and Duma Key. Did I mention this is Stephan King’s finest?

Jay is still chewing, timmy is on my chest purring. He’s on the left arm of the couch with his paws on my chest and his face in my face, purring away. He’s not daunted by Jay at all.

I think Jayden might be done chewing. Better go check on him. I’m like a worried new mom haha. He’s only two feet away from me, but I have to touch him. Ok dislodged Timmy to check Jayden. He’s laying on his side, with the Kong between his paws hahaha. Wish I had energy to video, but that will come soon enough.

4 Comments

Filed under Audio books, Doggy Diaries, Jayden, Spinelli, spoons, Timmy

Doggy Diaries – First day so far

Ah to be home. Jayden slept through the night, as did I haha. B came in at one point and touched me and I woke up asking if we were at school haha!! He said no you’re home and your dog is asleep right there. Phew. Then I went back to sleep. Oh did my bed feel wonderful. I guess Timmy was the only cat to sleep with us last night. The other two are still hiding. I found Spinelli in her hiding place this morning and said hi and she sniffed me, hissed and left. Then a bit later she came into the bathroom and then ran when I touched her. She and Fi are acting just like Timmy and Fi acted when Spinelli came home, so I’m sure they’ll adjust. Earlier when I was on the computer, Jay was at my feet and Timmy was sitting on the couch with me.

When I got up I went and started the coffee and started waking up. Just like at school, Jay was on tie down for a bit but then he did his “I have to pee” whimper so I took him out and he went immediately. Then I fed him and he was happy. Then I offered a cup of water and unlike at school, he drank it up. He’s pretty low energy today and my mind tries to tell me he’s ot happy but I’m sure he’s just tired after all the craziness the last two days, like I am. He still licks my face a lot and is fine, just hasn’t wanted to play. We did obedience this morning and he was a champ. So fun to do that without being watched. I showed B last night just briefly hehe.

I must have brought the rain with me because it’s cold and rainy here. Lovely. I can’t wait to get out there and work him a bit but not in this weather. As soon as it clears up I’m gonna take him and my cane and the clicker and start mapping the dumpster haha!! As of now I’m not comfortable going there after trying it last night. I need to know where that curb is that he thinks is an obstacle, so I’ll click that and then the dumpster. He already knew where to go for home last night. He kinda stopped in front of our path as though not sure and I said, yep and he went right there. I can’t wait to do some other stuff.

I walked him around the house a little and then I needed a shower. I think it was the fastest shower ever haha! I went back into the bedroom and he pawed my feet and licked my face like, you left, but you’re back. Now he’s totally stretched out on the floor, laying on my left foot. The blinds are open to the sliding door, so he can see outside. B had been leaving it open for the cats, and I’m sure glad he told me last night that they were open or I wouldn’t have known haha!

So, so far so good. I wish the weather was nicer, but it’s probably good that I’m not jumping in to things today. I’m still exausted, but so anxious to work him around here, alone, without the shadows we had at school. Now that we’re alone, I’m not second guessing myself at all. I know I know what to do and I’m just doing it. It’s rather nice.

Not sure what the rest of the day will look like. He doesn’t like the pop up crate so I definitely want to get a kennel. I think I’ll enlist Kevin this week since he has a truck and time, though I’m wondering how I’ll get Jay in the truck. Hmmm. It’s kinda high up. We’ll see. I’m also a little freaked out about Jay riding in cars. I’m not so worried about B because I know and trust his driving, and it’s not like I don’t trust others’ driving but it still freaks me out. One thing at a time, and I’ll take things as slow as I need. Jayden is a very valuable dog so I’ll trust my gut on that one.

My cell phone just rang but it’s in the other room. I’m sure everyone is excited to talk to me but I’m taking the phone slow too haha. I’m starting to feel really tired. A nap may be in order and I can actually do that now sweet!

Oh yeah, I need to change the header on the blog again. Hmmm.

Just read through this and wanted to clarify that Jayden wouldn’t be in the back of the truck haha! When I read that it sounded like I might put him in the back of the truck, but no worries there; I would never do that.

2 Comments

Filed under cats, Doggy Diaries, Fi, Jayden, Spinelli, spoons, Timmy, transitioning, weather