POTP for the Paw

Nothing much going on around here. Last Wednesday I had my acupuncture because my hip was starting to hurt again. Then Dad took me up the mountain so I could visit with Mom and have lunch with my friend Carrie. On the way home after work we stopped at another church where Mom and Dad are starting to go on Sundays. Daddy met us at the door and introduced me to Pastor Mark. Pastor Mark welcomed me into his office and told me to feel free to explore while he talked to my folks. After about an hour I knew it was past my suppertime so I started to remind Mom. I had to remind her loudly. She finally got the hint and we all headed home.

Thursday, before going to the children’s hospital, I stopped by work and got my treat from my friend Dave. Then I went on to the hospital, saw my friend Lois who always gives me a treat when I get there, and therapized some kids and nurses and a doctor or two. My friend Beth had a treat for me when I went back to work with Mom.

Friday, I really goofed up. I thought Mom wanted me to go downstairs to get groomed, so I kept running away from her. She finally gave up – and left without me! Later I found out that I had been invited to a birthday party!! I still can’t believe Mom went without me!! Happy birthday Jentry. I hope you had fun without me. I know it would have been better if I had been there. Oh, what, Mom? There was no food, not even cake? Well, I am sure Jentry had plenty of fun without me there.

This morning I got groomed. I knew I was picking up grooming vibes. Tomorrow is my teeth-cleaning-at-the vet day. They will do blood work first to make sure it is ok to help me go to sleep while they clean my teeth really good.  The teeth cleaning has been scheduled for a while. Now I also have to have my paw checked. I have had a tiny pink lump on my front left paw for a long time. Mom caught me licking that paw last night and of course she had to stick her nose in and see why I was licking. This is what she saw:

Exhibit A

Exhibit A

You can’t tell real well from this picture, but it is a raised lump. By Mom’s reaction, I sure hope it isn’t anything bad. I sure hope I don’t end up having to wear a cone of shame. I sure hope I don’t lose my paw! Oh no! Oh no! Oh no! POTP for me, please.

One Lovely Blog Award – for ME!

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Woo hoo! Another award! I love awards. Like my Annie Award for being the best ever dog in a play (or something like that). And I love this award. It is so pretty.  Thank you, Puppy Doc and Samantha at Musings of Puppy Doc. You are my newest friends.

Now, according to the rules (below) I have to share 7 facts about myself. Hmm, how can I limit this to only 7… he, he.

  1. I am a svelt 20.5 pounds because I lost 4.5 pounds over the last few months. Mom took away my canned food and topped my kibble with veggies!
  2. My most favorite thing in the whole world is acting on stage. I even got a special blue lucite award with my name on it (the Annie Award I mentioned above) for “Director’s Choice.” I could be on stage every night and never get tired of it.
  3. My second most favorite thing in the whole world is therapizing kids at the kid’s hospital. I only get to go once a month because there are so many dogs who like to do this, but I am the only smaller dog. I sit in the bed with the little ones, and grin the whole time I am there.
  4. Of course, my very, very most favorite thing in the whole world is treats. I get treats while I act and before I therapize. I get a go to the mailbox treat when I am home with Dad and a night night treat. My BFF Carrie brings me treats to work at St. Timothy’s and my new BFF Dave brings me a treat to work at St. Luke. And now my newest friend Beth brings me a treat on Thursdays to St Luke.
  5. I hate being groomed and I hate getting baths. Mom says I creep when I am on the groom table, and I should know better after 12 years of getting groomed every month. I still think I could creep right off that table one of these times.
  6. Even more than being groomed, I hate wearing clothes. I mean, I hate, hate, hate, hate, hate wearing clothes of any kind. When I was younger I would stand like a statue if Mom put clothes on me. She could pick me up and set me down somewhere else and my body would remain rigid like it was made of plaster. Now, I run around in spurts like a crazy dog. Run, freeze, run, freeze.
  7. I am not a cuddler or a huggie girl. I like my space. If I want pet I will let you know. I will continue to let you know until I feel you have pet me enough. Then you need to leave me alone. Don’t hug me. I let the sick kids at the hospital hug me, and my Auntie Jen, but that’s it. Don’t cuddle me. I will run away from you.
  8. Yes, I can count, but I have one more thing to tell you. Here it is: I am smart. Don’t try to pull anything over on me, ’cause it most likely won’t work. And if it does work, and I figure it out, I will pee in your bed, on your side of the bed. And you won’t know it until you are so tired you can barely stand up and you start to slide into bed and suddenly realize it is cold and wet and smells bad. Bwahaha!

Here are my nominees: (Noodle, dear, you have already been nominated, or you would have been first on my list, sweetie pie.)

Shoko and Kali of  The Canadian Cats

Ray of A Dog’s Life? (Stories of me and him)

Rachel of rachelmankowitz

Belle, Bess and Bonnie of Three Pups and a Couple of Kitties

Sidney, Shelby and Sophie of corkscot

Dante of The Dante Diaries

Jasper and Nellie of  jaspersdoggyworld

Kismet (you mean old bird, you) of kylascott

Sammie of  Saving Sammie

 

The Fine Print for the Nominees:

1-Thank the person who nominated you and link their blog in the post.
2-Copy the rules and add the blog award badge as an image
3-Share 7 facts about yourself to your fellow bloggers.
4-Then nominate 15 people (I of course didn’t do this many ).

 

Operation Hoodie

When my peeps brothers were little, our Mom used to make a lot of their clothes. Often to match, sometimes for halloween.  They were very young and didn’t know to protest.

Adam, Mom, and Andew L-R)

Adam, Mom, and Andew L-R) – many moons ago.

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Sorry about quality of shot – these are old pictures.

I have seen Mom at the sewing machine from time to time, usually to make a repair, but never to torture me with clothes. We got a cold spell and out came my hoodie. Even though I lost weight, it was still a bit snug. Plus, since it pulls on over my head, I stand on my hind legs to get it off. With the hip dysplasia, that is no longer the best option. So Mom got an idea.

Mom wasted no time heading to the sewing machine.

Mom had an idea. She wasted no time heading to the sewing machine.

First, she used what she calls pinking shears to open up the belly of my hoodie. Poor hoodie. She used some material originally bought for another project, cut it to fit, sewed velcro onto it, then sewed it onto my poor hoodie.

Operation on my hoodie.

Operation on my hoodie.

Finally:

An extension panel with a velcro closure on my Hoodie’s bellie

Then came the test drive:

New bed!

Mom got me a new dog bed as a belated Christmas present. Sheesh. Doesn’t she know all I want is treats. On the bright side, I did help pick it out at the pet store. After trying most of the beds there about 4 or 5 beds, I smiled when I sat down in this one. It’s a Martha Stewart original, with a reversible bottom cushion. I didn’t understand at first why she put it on the floor at the bottom of our bed. I wouldn’t go near it. Why would I sleep there when I have a queen size bed with lots of blankets?

Still not too happy about this.

Still not too happy about this.

This morning Mom said my bed at the Methodist Church – where we work two days a week – is too big and in the way, so this will be my new work bed. When she brought it into our office this morning I still wasn’t sold on the idea. I tried it but soon went and laid down in the spot nearer to Mom that I like best. Mom finally had the light bulb moment and moved the bed along the other wall, which was near to her, as well as more out of the way – of the door to the mini-fridge, that is!

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This might be better.

 

 

 

 

 

 

I thought I had better try it out a little longer.

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Zzzzzzz

What? No, I wasn’t sleeping on the job!

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Phone Training

My first day back to work – Thursday – was a busy one. Dave remembered my treat, so the day definitely started off good. We were getting a new phone system and I had to supervise that. My minions  the church volunteers gathered in the front office in the afternoon to be trained on the new phones. I paid close attention in case no one is around and I have to take a call.

I had been sitting while being trained on phones, but decided I could learn as much in a more comfortable position.

I had been sitting while being trained on phones, but decided I could learn as much in a more comfortable position.

 

Meeting a beautiful schnauzer

What a time of it I have had. All the boarders (both of them) finally left and I thought I was on easy street. Mom and I had a great day at home by ourselves on Saturday, doing laundry and stuff. “By ourselves” reminds me that my Dad had been missing for well over a week. No one would tell me where he was. I finally gave up and decided it would be just me and Mommy. Next thing that happens…Mom pulls out a suitcase and starts packing it. Then she pulls out my bag and starts packing it! Yay! We are going for a trip.

We were all ready to go when Auntie Jen showed up. She helped put Mom and my stuff in her car, but I wouldn’t go near it until Mom got in. I wanted to be sure she wasn’t sending me off by myself. We spent a nice evening at Auntie Jen’s, and at bedtime I got a bit confused. Instead of going home, Mom lifted me into a big bed and crawled in next to me. This would have been alright, except there was another person and her schnauzer in a bed just across from us. I stood on the bed and stared at them, but they did not seem threatening. In fact, the other person looked a lot like my Mom and was getting under the bedcovers at the same time. The other dog was a rather attractive schnauzer and looked very intelligent, so I just kept staring, as she stared back. Mom had already turned off the lamp but there was enough light coming in the window from the moon that I could see they were still there. I watched them as long as I could keep my eyes open. Apparently the beautiful dog in the other bed was also tired, as she sank down into the bed at exactly the same time as me!  We both closed our eyes and went to sleep.

Mom was up early the next morning. Hmmm. Strange for a Sunday, but everything was strange by now. We went downstairs to the kitchen where Mom finally explained to me where my Dad had been for so long. His uncle -who was also his mentor – was dying. Dad had driven our car up to a place called Fort Wayne in the state of Indiana to sit with him. Uncle Don did die, Mommy explained, and she was going to join Dad for the funeral. She went through the mind thought of suns rising and setting to help me know how long she would be gone. Then, she and my Auntie Jen went out the door without me!know she had explained everything, but I didn’t believe she was leaving me!  Auntie Jen finally came home, and my Mom wasn’t with her. I was so upset, I wouldn’t even let her touch me. I just cowered down every time she came near me. I know she felt bad, and I was glad, because she took my Mom away and left her somewhere. I didn’t want her to get ahold of me and do dog-only-knows-what with me, too.

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                 Ella

I have a new Uncle Bill who lives with Auntie Jen. I stayed in his lap a lot when he got home from work at night. I also spent a lot of time in the big backyard with my cousins, Piper the schnauzer and Ella the part boxer. We ran and ran and smelled the bunny holes and squirrel droppings and all the other wonderful smells. We chased each other and even played tug of war with a drain pipe that I think Ella might have torn off the house. I dug holes and got my beard filthy. It all helped take my mind off of possibly being an orphan. I still hadn’t forgiven Auntie Jen.

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     Piper (L) and Me

Finally, after supper on Wednesday night, Mom and Dad came back to Uncle Bill’s. Mom withstood Ella trying to knock her down to swoop me up in her arms and let me kiss her all over her face. I was so excited I shook all over. Then Dad held me and pet me too. My family was back!

This morning I went to work with Mom, but that’s a story for another day.

Memory Monday – Theater Finale

Before I tell you about my final gig as Toto, I remembered that I wanted to show you something from the first show. The Theatre Centre had these cool buttons made. That’s ME!

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Now, I am back to give you what you crave: details of my final appearance in a production of the Wizard of Oz.

It was spring of 2014. I was eleven years old, limber, sharp of mind, and jonesing to get back on stage.  My first Dorothy had been one of the managers at Rock City ever since I knew her. Every year she would hire Dad to teach Irish folk dance in March at Shamrock City and polka at Octoberfest. She deserted us left after having her second baby and Rock City hired a new person, Jonathan. During the Shamrock City gig in 2014 Dad heard Jonathan talking about bringing WOZ back to the Colonnade. Dad came home and told Mom she needed to go with him the next weekend and bring me and some of my calling cards. Of course we went, and the next thing we knew we were being asked to submit my bio for the play. It’s pretty impressive, so I know you will want to read it, too. Lexi’s Bio.

Even though it had been a couple of years since my last performance, I was still active in Freestyle. That kept me sharp and responsive to movements. I still did a bit of preparation for my part, which you can read about in a previous post. There were lots of rehearsals, too. I knew what to do, so I tried to help everyone else so we could just get on with opening the play. Here are some pictures from rehearsal:

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Why isn’t anyone up here rehearsing with me. Chop, chop, people!

 

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                                                   Always listen closely when the director gives directions.

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 See how close I am to the drop off? Mommy held her breath a lot.

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Hi I’m Toto. Nice to meetcha.

 

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That’s Dorothy on the left, Glenda the good witch on the right, and a couple of  munchkins in the background.

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This young man had never held a dog, so Mom convinced him to hold me. Now he wants a dog.

 Finally, rehearsals were over. Every night for a week we didn’t get home and in bed until eleven o’clock. Mom and I were exhausted. We were barely getting to work the next day.  And there was too much to do for us to sleep at work. Our schedule was get up, eat breakfast (me), go to work, eat lunch (Mom),  starve the schnauzer, go to the theater, rehearse and get treats (me), go home, get a treat (me) and go to bed. Over and over again. I lost a whole pound.

The play opened in September of 2014. I loved being on the stage again. It was on Mommy’s birthday that I posted my thoughts about it, which you can read here. Of course, I had a different Dorothy again. Here is a picture of us on stage. I know this is while we are in Oz because her dress is blue. In Kansas, everything is black and white. Isn’t it funny that I am still  black and white in Oz, BOL!

Me and my 3rd Dorothy

Me and my 3rd Dorothy

 I look at the picture now and am embarassed about my weight back then. No wonder she grunted every time she picked me up! What an extra 5 pounds can do to a little schnauzer!

On opening night, those munchkins kept getting in my way. They started dancing as I was entering from stage right and almost danced me right off the front of the stage. Now that would have been an opening night to remember! It shook me up. I wasn’t myself the rest of the night. I hear people say that, and I think it is funny. Who are they if they aren’t themselves? Of course, in my case, I was Toto. BOL. The next night Mom adjusted my entrance to be from stage left. It worked much better.

I performed every Thursday, Friday, and Saturday night, plus a matinee on Saturdays. I’ll tell you, by the time Saturday night came around I was almost too tired to walk onto the stage. I know my acting Saturday evenings suffered from it. At first Mom would take me out shopping – like to Lowe’s Hardware or the pet store  – after the matinee, just to kill time. We live an hour away, so it was too far to go home. When she realized how tired I was she let me sleep in my kennel in the wings, just off the stage. That helped, but I was still ready to go home. By the end of the second week I was posting about that.

One night my Dad came and watched me perform. I didn’t realize he was there until I saw him in the lobby at the meet and greet. He held me while everyone pet me and asked if I was his dog. He had the honor of saying yes. I was really tired from my performance so I laid quietly in his arms. However, when he put me down, I tried to scamper down the hall, where I could smell the Mexican food from some other event. I am never too tired for food.  After that, either Mom or Dad held me until it was time to go home. Drat, foiled again.

WOZ 3

The last day of the play was a Sunday. Before the curtain opened on the evening performance Mommy said she had something very important to tell me, and to listen closely. She said it was not only the last performance of this production, but probably my last performance as Toto. She said to do my very best; push away being tired and give them a show they will never forget. So I did. I acted my little heart out. I think it was my best performance ever. I took my final bows with Dorothy and the cast and walked to the door. I was too sad to say goodbye to anyone. At least I have my memories.

My all-time favorite thing…the stage. And this is a montage, so it counts as one picture, as Noodle said!

When all the world is a hopeless jumble, And the raindrops tumble all around, Heaven opens a magic lane. When all the clouds darken up the skyway, There’s a rainbow highway to be found, leading from your window pane. To a place behind the sun, Just a step beyond the rain. —- Somewhere over the rainbow…*

*The opening lines from the song “Over the Rainbow.”