There’s one (or more) in every crowd.

A few days back, we took the puppy to her first session of obedience school.

We were instructed to bring three things to class: immunization records, a leash, and treats.

One puppy owner didn’t bring any of those items.

That particular owner (Shall we call her Eileen? Let’s do!) sat on a stool and watched her dog run up and hump every other dog in the class. As the rest of us were scrambling a bit to get the humper away from our dogs, Eileen simply laughed and yelled, “She’s been doing that to my Rottweiler all week!”

Note: Scout is not yet spayed. Her siblings are scheduled for their surgery on Friday, and her surgery will most likely take place in the next two weeks. Please know that we cannot officially adopt her until she has been fixed. Back to the story.

As our instructor talked to the class about basic disciplinary tools and how to use treats as incentives, Eileen approached me and said, “My grandkids are nine and they’re unschooled, and they’re reading a series of books that I can’t remember the name of, but they’re really great readers, and blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, blah, et cetera!”

What I wanted to say: Unschooled like your dog? The dog who is unleashed because you cannot follow instructions and is trying to get my puppy pregnant as we stand around and discuss something you can’t remember?! I paid money for this class!

What I did say: That’s great! I’m sorry, I just missed what the instructor said!

During the entire class, Eileen paid little to no attention to her own dog. Instead, she asked Jeff to help her figure out how to e-mail a photo of Scout to her son. Also, she yelled out to random store employees to bring her a pet gate, a jogging vest, and a leash with neon paws on it for her dog. (They didn’t have the leash with the decorative paws, so her puppy remained leashless. Leashless and Humping.)

All of this to say: I have zero patience for flaky folks who don’t pay attention.

Also, I will never appreciate unschooling after hearing about it from Eileen.

Meanwhile, Scout is learning how to drive a car. Because she’s brilliant, and I’m becoming one of Those Puppy People who say things like, “Coot Widdle Pahpee.”

(I promise to not sing more songs about the puppy in my next post. You’re welcome.)

The End.

Scout has the keys.
Please come over and comment! You could win a $100 Visa gift card!Now get over here and watch my kids brush their teeth! ‘ ‘ ‘text/javascript’>

Stepping it up a notch!

As you may (or may not) know, I haven’t eaten meat in ten and a half months. I didn’t give up meat for ethical reasons (although I tend to be drawn to the people who do), and I didn’t give it up for health reasons (although I tend to feel 93% better when I’m not eating meat). It has been a good run, and I’m actually finding that I’m not craving meat the way I did during my first two tries at becoming a vegetarian.

On Saturday evening, I went to a new friend’s house where I admired buckets of yarn and shared a raw vegan meal. And I know 48 of you are rolling your eyes right now, but hear me out. The meal included red peppers, jícama, pineapple, strawberries, oranges, mango, kiwi, and a nut pâté that was so incredibly good. I walked away from the table feeling So Full and So Healthy, and here’s my plan: One raw vegan meal per day for as long as I can. If I go 100% vegan? Good for me. If not? I’ll forgive myself. All I know is this: After having that meal yesterday evening, the pizza my family ate for dinner this evening didn’t appeal to me in the least. Instead, I had a bean burrito and a bowl of watermelon, and I’m feeling good.

Also, I need a juicer. Why do I need a juicer? I’ll tell you why: I have a funny feeling that carrot and spinach juice would cure my headaches, my cramps, my skin, and my demeanor. Any advice would be appreciated.

School is tricky. And exhausting.

You guys. Scout had her first obedience school session this afternoon. While there, we met her brother and sister and had a mini-playdate in the training area. Three tiny furballs jumping all over each other. My heart? It melted. (I’m sure carrot and spinach juice could fix that. I’m hoping the juice would also give me back my edge. It seems that having a puppy in the house is sort of bringing out the insipidity in me. Not a bad thing, but definitely a Thing.)
This is my final review, and I really want you to win the giveaway! All it takes is a comment with a working e-mail address, and you’re in! Now get over here and watch my kids brush their teeth! ‘ ‘ ‘text/javascript’>

Destroying Rottweiler-Scented Memories

Do you remember when I told you that I was holding on to a pair of socks because they smelled like Beezus?

Scout managed to find those socks a few days back and she killed them.

(She is forgiven.)

Question: Why did three attorneys who specialize in divorce decide to follow my Twitter feed on the morning of my birthday?


This is my final review, and I really want you to win the giveaway! Come over here and watch my kids brush their teeth! ‘ ‘ ‘text/javascript’>

I believe I’m sprouting a finger, Mr. Darwin!

Hey! Do you remember nearly a year ago when I showed my hip to you, and it really looked like I was showing my butt?! And then, two months later, I talked about my hip weirdness once again?

When I saw my doctor in June, I was given antibiotics to kill the family of spiders that were nesting under my skin. Two months later, when the spiders were still bubbling, my doctor said, “Our choices are to wait it out to see if the cyst goes down, or have it removed by a surgeon.” I told him I wanted to wait it out, and he gave me three months in which to wait.

Nine months have passed. (Nine months in which I could have had a baby! But I didn’t!) The cyst is still there, and it’s big and hard and it sometimes wakes me up in the middle of the night to say, “Hey! I’m ITCHY! Poke! Poke!”

Long story short: I saw my doctor last week. He referred me to one of the only plastic surgeons covered by my insurance.

Receptionist at the Plastic Surgeon Office (RatPSO): I’m sorry. He operates only from the neck up.

Me: I can stand on my head for twenty minutes.

RatPSO: I’m sorry?

Me: I make jokes when I’m nervous. It’s one of my best and worst traits.

This morning I met with a general surgeon. She walked into the room, asked me to pull my pants down, touched the cyst, and said, “Yep. Let’s slice that thing off.” On May 25th, I will drop the kids off at school, drive myself to the hospital, get a bunch of shots to numb my hip, lie very still so they can “slice that thing off” and stitch it up, and drive myself home just in time to pick the kids up from school and then volunteer at a fifth grade recognition ceremony. It’s called being STALWART, people. If the doctor allows me to bring the cyst home, I’m going to stick it in the dehydrator and make a special treat for the puppy. (It’s all about sharing DNA and wearing Birkenstocks. Am I right? Yes. I’m right.) (I made stew out of my placenta and my family LOVED it.) (I make jokes when I’m nervous! Remember?!)

Speaking of the puppy, this is what’s happening right now:


She’ll be starting school on Sunday afternoon.

(They grow up so fast, don’t they?) ‘ ‘ ‘text/javascript’>

She’s even cuter than Mary Badham.

When I was seven years old, my family went to the Humane Society where we adopted a puppy named Thumper. We presented it to my mom as a Mother’s Day present, and she really couldn’t have been less thrilled. (Mom is not a fan of dogs. I’m not sure she ever touched Thumper.) For the past thirty three years, my mom has joked that 1978 goes down as The Worst Mother’s Day Ever.

As you know, two weeks ago we adopted Beezus, but then had to return her to the Humane Society. I’m still not over it. I’m not sure I’ll ever be over it. (Confession: There’s a pair of socks under my bed that Beezus slept on while she was here. Because the socks still smell like her, I haven’t had the heart to wash them. Is that weird? I’m not planning on hanging them in a shadow box or anything. I just want to occasionally smell them. Okay. Let’s change the subject.)

Last week I spent some time searching through the Stray Rescue of St. Louis website. So many dogs in need of homes. So many dogs with heartbreaking stories who need to be nursed back to health before they can find a forever home. After talking with Jeff and the girls, I left a message to ask some questions about this puppy, who is currently in foster care. I then went to the Event calendar and noticed that an Adoption Event was scheduled at a PetSmart near our house yesterday afternoon. We decided to go.

After spending nearly fifteen minutes admiring all of the dogs that Stray Rescue had brought to PetSmart, we decided to spend a little time with a black lab who didn’t really want to spend much time with us. One of the women who brought a few of her foster dogs in asked, “Do you know what you’re looking for in a dog?” I told her that I need to be 100% sure that the dog we adopt will be good with kids and cats, and although we were hoping for a puppy, we are also pretty flexible.

She then told me that she had something she was keeping hidden for Just The Right Family. She led us over to a small crate underneath a table, and when she reached in, she pulled this out:


It’s a ten week old female Shih Tzu/Yorkie mix who has been in foster care since the day she was born. Because she hasn’t yet been spayed, she cannot be adopted. HOWEVER, she can be fostered until after her surgery and can THEN be adopted by her foster family.

Foster Mom: Do you think you might be interested in fostering her?

The Pudding Family gushed and melted, and a PetSmart employee had to come over and scrape us off of the floor.

Me: Yes. I think we might be interested.

Internet Friends, please meet Scout.

Scout in Motion

We’ll be fostering her until she is spayed, and then she’ll become an official member of The Pudding Family. Best Mother’s Day Ever.
It’s the final day for this giveaway! It takes less than a minute to enter!
The Puddings are eating vegetables and giving away a $100 Visa Gift Card! Leave a comment for your chance to win! ‘ ‘ ‘text/javascript’>