No hug for you.

To celebrate the first day of school, I always make graham cracker sandwiches with chocolate icing for the girls.

To celebrate the final day of school, we tend to go out for frozen yogurt.

On Christmas morning, I get up at 5:00, make coffee, and watch the yule log on television until everyone else wakes up.

(Confession: I just watched that video for ten minutes or so, and my blood pressure went from 120/80 to 80/60.)

I’m one of those people who needs rituals and celebrations and plans (and a spinning wheel). I don’t like having things sprung on me. (Oh, have I got a story for you that I really can’t go into right now, but please know that something has happened that led me to slam my hand (in disgust!) onto a table and then drown my sorrows in church potluck brownies! Oceans of obscurity! (As Fluid Pudding, I share only 17% of my life.)) As much as I think I want someone to throw a surprise birthday party for me at some point, deep down I know that it will probably make me more angry than smiley.

Here’s the scoop. For the first time in 42 years, according to my Ease into 5K application, I was supposed to run for 20 minutes (in a row!) this morning. (Up to this point, my longest run has been nine minutes.) I decided to prepare for the 20 minutes by purchasing the soundtrack to Moonrise Kingdom and setting it to begin playing as I start running. I decided to dress up for this monumental run by wearing my black running skirt, my gray wicking t-shirt, my new sports bra, and my favorite running socks. (Get a load of me, will you?) Finally, I planned to celebrate my success (burning with optimism’s flames!) by walking however many laps it takes to finish out the soundtrack. My twenty minute run (plus ten minute warm up/cool down) plus laps for Moonrise Kingdom was going to take about 75 minutes. Add that to the time it takes to drive to and from the track, and we come up with a 90-minute plan. I normally leave the house at 5:30. This puts me back home at 7:00. Jeff leaves for work between 7:30 and 8:00. Excellent.

And then Henry started having butt problems, and the only open vet appointment required us to leave the house right at 7:30. I cannot shower, eat breakfast, and get ready in  thirty minutes. (One of many tragic flaws. Even with no hair (we’ll talk about that later), my showers go for about 15 minutes, it takes seven minutes to choose clothes and pull them on, and then we arrive at my face, which is really suffering right now due to stress/not enough water/church potluck brownies/hormones/et cetera. I don’t wear much makeup, but it takes me some time to strategize and execute a semi-natural looking finish. And then I have to choose earrings.) Hhhhhhhh. I had to cancel this morning’s twenty minute run.

Tomorrow is another day, my friend. A day that will NOT find me spending $125 at the vet on steroids, new fish-based food and treats, and anal gland expression. (Teaching Moment: Facial expressions are signals of specific emotions that are recognized universally. I don’t know anything about my OWN anal glands, but I do know that smelling HENRY’S anal gland expression motivates MY face to showcase the universal signs for Fear and Disgust. Enjoy your lunch!) Do you remember when Henry was an itchy puppy? (I dare you to follow that link and not melt at the sight of Henry as a puppy. I can barely look at that photo without pushing my lips way out and saying, “Oh, sweet puppy.” Oh, sweet puppy.) Anyway, Henry is itchy again and the allergy is all up in his butt and I just stepped away from the computer to give him a hug. (I would also hug you if someone you don’t know very well stuck his fingers into your butt this morning. If you were a dog. Which you are not. So, really, no hug for you.) ‘ ‘ ‘text/javascript’>

21 thoughts on “No hug for you.”

  1. Saturday I have my dog’s yearly appointment at the vet, and one of the things I’ll be discussing is her anal glands. She way too frequently does the “drop and drag” on the floor, carpet, or even the concrete sidewalk outside! My poor girl, and your poor Henry.

  2. Oscar’s allergies improved dramatically when I switched from Lamb to Herring and Sweet potato. Lately we’ve switched to venison based… he seems to like it better but I think he’s getting itchy again. Poor Henry, it sucks being a dog when you don’t feel good.

  3. Sorry to hear you’re having a hard time hitting your stride with the running. You’ll get there.

    The vet asked me if I would like to learn how to express my dogs anal glands in order to save on my vet bills. I told her that however much it costs, I’m willing to pay to have it done. Blech.

  4. Weird that I read every single time you update your blog, and this is the topic that gets me to comment . . . but (butt) . . . our vet recommended to us that we add a couple tablespoons of canned pumpkin (pure pumpkin, not pie filling) to our dog’s food each time we feed her. It bulks up the stool, which helps the anal glands express naturally, and prevents the dragging of the butt on carpet, etc. Our dog likes the pumpkin, and it has helped tremendously with the anal gland thingy. Good day, all!

  5. Much as it pains me to mention this, I too received the question “Would you like us to show you how to…? to which I reluctantly answered “Sure, why not” and believe you me it saved a bundle over the years. It’s really not that big a deal. The girls could be occupied at the front end of the process by feeding treats. I used to have someone hold a biscuit firmly in one hand so the dog couldn’t easily grab and gobble the whole thing at once, and while he nibbled distractedly I’d have my way with him on the other end. The upside is that if you do it often enough, it doesn’t really accumulate to the point where it smells so ghastly. And the pay-off in reduced butt scooting? WORTH it!

  6. We are so totally the same person, and not just because I own a veritable assortment (i.e., more than one) of yule log DVDs that I can watch whenever I want.

    (I have my day, every single day, planned down to the minute. THE MINUTE. No one else in my life respects/understands this, at all, ever. I know it may LOOK like I am just mindlessly watching TV, but I’ve got 7 minutes left on this recorded show which means that I will have EXACTLY enough time to unload/reload the dishwasher after it’s over before I have to pick up a child from some activity somewhere. TO THE MINUTE.)

    P.S. Feel better soon, Henry. You are my favorite.

  7. The people who read this blog know all the best stuff.. Now, if I only had a dog…

  8. Tips for shortening your routine: Pick out clothes and earrings the night before, right after you check the weather and your calendar.

    I keep my “every day” face in one bag and extra makeup in a larger bag. After I shower, I line the components from the everyday bag on the sink and put them back in the bag as I use them.

    I have a basket with all the post-shower body and hair products and what I’m going to use comes out and goes back in as I use it. Because I WILL get interrupted and forget if I put on X or not, but I will know immediately because it will be in the bag/basket if I did.

    Anal as all hell but it works.

  9. Pumpkin? Brilliant. Fiber to the rescue once again!

    And – oh my goodness! That puppy picture! someone, please get that dog a product line!

  10. I am a Capricorn (& proud of it) & I just love surprise birthday parties, surprise anything really…..NOT!!……unlike some Sagitarius type people who shall remain nameless….GWQ Henry

  11. Oh My Gosh! Once again I find myself floating in the Land of What in the Name of all that’s Holey is going on? Maybe I just don’t have wings enough to manage this site and the those of the commenting hierarchye. Alas! (ps I can’t seem to spell worth a hoot today!)

  12. If you are a peanut butter loving family, might I recommend Dark Chocolate Dreams made by Peanut Butter & Co. It is my nightly treat spread on graham crackers.

    This comment is not spam for them. Your first day of school tradition inspired me to share.

    The pumpkin suggestion sounds so good I want to write it down somewhere, even though we don’t even have a dog right now, let alone a butt-scooting one. But who knows, we might have one someday.

  13. My sister had this happen to her dog at a vet appointment. Being a new dog owner, when the vet offered her the opportunity to step out of the room because it “might be offensive” she declined thinking there was no way she’d be offended by the vet sticking her fingers in the dog’s butt.

    And then came the smell. And she realized what the vet meant. The SMELL was offensive. HA!

  14. a. Have you had a chance to use your new sports bra yet? How does it support the girls? I need a sports bra after not running for about 10 years and I seem to recall that we have similar figures (I remember when you were shocked at your bra fitting a while back – I had a very similar experience around the same time).
    b. My almost two-year-old demands a daily fix of the, “fireplace! fireplace! fiiiirrrre plllaaaaaaace!” daily since you posted this. He watches for about 45 seconds then says, “Ok. Bye-bye fireplace,” and closes the laptop, noticeably calmer.

  15. sometimes i wish all of your parenthetical asides were lyrics from xtc. hugs to you, even though you’re not a dog…i won’t even go into the butt thing (ha!).

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