Friday, December 28, 2007

Our Last Night


Well we just had a fabulous dinner of pasta and grouper and a fantastic salad. Tomorrow we begin on the leftovers. God bless Mimi's meatballs and Nonie's make ahead mashed potatoes.

Doug and Mom just went to Ingles on an ice cream run - Doug in his pajamas no less. Dad and I are sitting by the fire he just stoked and are awaiting their return. It has been a fantastic day and a fantastic week. I am thinking of staying the weekend to prepare for the next quarter at PC, writing my syllabi while Mom watches Anton. I will in turn watch him while she finishes a painting she's doing of Dad for his 70th birthday.

It rained ALL day long today. Wonderful, luscious rain. Mom bought me a pair of support hose so I could stand in the kitchen for days and bake all these pretty cookies. My body is falling apart! But thankfully, my spirit is intact.

I have knitted a tremendous amount this past week, so much so that my index finger literally turned blue and numb. I think it's a Repetitive Stress Injury. So I've put the needles down for a while to let my hands rest. I do things pretty intensely and I always have to be careful about taking breaks. Well, I was so excited about being able to knit nonstop that didn't pay attention to my hands. Bad me. Here's a lovely hat I'm trying to finish.

SO, when they return, we will continue our Dexter marathon. We've just rented the first 3 discs of the first season and are hooked. Yay for dark comedy!

Merry Christmas to all of you. More later,


Wednesday, December 26, 2007

New Knitting

I've been able to do quite a bit of baking and knitting while up here. It feels SO good. Here's my latest project: a scarf for Mom. This ones got a lace pattern in between two leaves at both ends. I am using yarn from GGH called Aspen, a wool and acrylic blend. Lovely color!

Tonight we go to La Pachanga, the local mexican restaurant. I will be drinking the Ritas and having a blast!

Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Merry Christmas!

Check out my big gift this year. We swapped names and Mon drew mine. So she smartly had this necklace custom made for me. Typewriter keys are much prettier around your neck, though I must pay homage to the passing of an era. Will we someday wear apple keyboard commands as jewelry, too? Anyway, check out this designer's site. My necklace is there!

Had a great Christmas morning. We're just about to eat dinner. I am with the finest of company today. The best mother in the world, the best father in the world, the best baby in the world and the best husband in the world.

Peaceful sigh.

Monday, December 24, 2007

Christmas Eve

So it's Christmas Eve and we've just had a delicious dinner of Norwegian meatballs, mashed potatoes and peas. We've had a great day together and I am grateful for everything I have. This time last year, half of Dad's face wasn't working because of a tumor he had removed and I was battling migraines. THIS year we're both feeling a lot better and back into the swing of the lives we've so carefully mended.

Life is good. Look at this little gem in my lap.

I am happy.

Sunday, December 23, 2007

Christmas Cookies

Well. This is what I've done all day. And happily. I hadn't made cookies for a very long while, so this felt good. We boarded Bjorn yesterday before coming up to Rabun Gap and I was blue arriving here without him. It just wasn't the same. But I woke up feeling better today. I'm glad. I don't think the Bjorn decision is going to ruin my Christmas. Whew!

Thursday, December 20, 2007

Hard Decisions

In spite of my melancholy mood, here's a lovely picture of my blooming Christmas Cactus. It sits in my studio and gets afternoon light. Every year it blooms no matter what happens.

I am thinking of Bjorn and Anton. I just looked at pictures of dog bites in children and oooftah has it affected me. I am thinking that my reasons for wanting to keep Bjorn are selfish. And that's not good. To keep Anton safe from Bjorn I have to keep them separated. That's for at LEAST the next 5 years. No joke. How fun is that? That means Bjorn's away from the family. Listening to us play without him. While he broods in the corner or whines to be with us. And if we want them together, then I have to be literally in between them and make sure neither appears too threatening to the other. It is no fun and very hard work. No wonder I have a headache.

I keep picturing Bjorn at the breeder with all the other toy breeds. Yapping and playing and being dogs together. Bjorn was always a little jumpy around people. When he spent a few months at the breeder's he came back to us confident and more affectionate. He literally rubbed all over us like cats do. I realized that he had adopted that behavior from other dogs. That they were all snuggly and friendly with each other. Puppies together.

I am thinking about whose family is better for Bjorn?
And how would I feel about Anton really getting bitten and living with a scar? I owe him more safety than that.

My reasons for keeping Bjorn are selfish and not good for anyone but my own comfort. He's my teddy bear and I just need to let him go. He was my first "child". I am still in love with him. Still melt at the site of his beautiful face. Still love just the thought of him.

I dunno. I am feeling less guilty as I did a few days ago. No matter how much love or discipline or exercise I give Bjorn, I will never truly be fully confident that he won't try to bite again. If he can bite me, his favorite person in the world, then what could he do to Anton?

What is the more loving thing for me to do for Anton?
Keep him as absolutely safe as I can.

What is the more loving thing for me to do for Bjorn?
Keep him as absolutely happy as he can be.
Does that mean live in a house with gates away from family?

Yes, the training I've been doing with him these past few days has been great. The walking has been really good for him. Good for me, too. Yes, my making sure I walk thru doorways and up and down the stairs first has been great. Bjorn gets it.
BUT he still can be threatened by Anton. He is too little a dog to not to be threatened by Anton's unpredictable movements. No amount of training will ever completely guarantee that he won't bite when threatened.

I cannot have both of these creatures at once. I must choose what's best for both of them.

So I am, at this moment, leaning towards giving him back to the breeder. She is willing to take him.

I just have to be willing to let him go.

Anne. What is the most loving thing to do? The most loving thing to do. I am a good person who does loving things and I can make this choice if I make it out of love and not selfishness, neediness or sad desperation.

Again everyone. Thank you for reading and considering my dilemma.

We go up to Rabun Gap to be with Mom and Dad on Saturday. We will board Bjorn while we're up there. When we return after Christmas, I will really make up my mind.

Any thoughts you have about this loving choice I have to make are still appreciated. Prayers, too. I want this to be another peaceful Christmas.

Wednesday, December 19, 2007


Hello World,

Thank you for supporting me in my Bjorn-Mania. We are trying a new approach. So far, I think Bjorn's happier because I walk him every day and don't let him get ahead of me at the stairs or out the door. But I still have to keep him and Anton separated.

Anton wants to play with Bjorn and vice-versa. But the fine-boned Papillon is too threatened by Anton's aggressive crawling. They will not be able to play together until Anton understands how to be calm around Bjorn.

If I'm going to keep Bjorn, I'll have to do a lot more work to keep him more balanced than he is right now. No more babytalk, No more excessive cuddling. More exercise. More rules. More boundaries.

I am EXHAUSTED. But it's an empowering feeling. Being in charge of two boys. Um, three, if you count Dougie Fresh.

IF, after a few weeks, things have not improved and I have really given this my best shot, I will be able to give Bjorn back to the breeder to live with the pack SANS GUILT. I am going to die trying, but try I must.

I will keep you all posted on my progress.

I had planned on all kinds of Christmasy posts to share with you but am overwhelmed with the task at hand at the moment.
Christmas cookies will have to wait. But I will share our lovely tree with you. It's the first time we've used an artificial tree (gasp!) but MAN are they so much easier. No sap in the house. No sawdust. No needles to vacuum. No more headaches (yes I'm allergic to the real ones and have had xmas headaches ever since I can remember.) No more cursing from Doug as he puts the tree up or down. AND the best part of all? We did not kill a tree. :)

Saturday, December 15, 2007

Saying Goodbye To Bjorn

This is a sad post. And I guess what I want most from all of you is reassurance.

You all know Bjorn can lash out when he feels threatened. He felt trapped the other morning by Anton in our kitchen and almost bit him. Luckily Doug got in the way and was able to get Anton away from him. So that's the last straw. We're having to give him back to the breeder. Bjorn will most likely live out his life there with the pack of other small dogs. But he will be happier there than with me. He'll get more attention there and will be with stronger pack leaders.

I just can't risk Anton getting injured by him. I feel so guilty, tho. So inept. A failure. I love that little dog so much. My Monkey Mouse. Bjorn was the first dog I really loved. Deeply. And I feel so guilty and ashamed of my trying to humanize him. I hope he has a happy life in spite of my irresponsibility. I feel it's even more irresponsible to keep him out of my own need to be loved and licked by this sweet creature. I feel so weak. I feel like I've damaged Bjorn. I should have never gotten him in the first place. I'm a better cat person than a dog person.

I am doing the right thing, right? We take him tomorrow. Last night was agony. Yesterday was agony. Today will be worse unless I can think of some positives in this dark situation.

I will miss him so much at school. I will miss him in the car. I will miss him everywhere.

Sunday, December 09, 2007


I spent the day printing and painting little red birds today. Tomorrow I address. Here's this year's Christmas card! Yay!

Thursday, December 06, 2007

Pee & Poo

Simply amazing. For years I've been looking for the right underwear for Doug and now I've found it.