Tuesday, October 7, 2014

A Message From Puppyville

Geez. It's been more than a month since I posted! Who had any idea how much work a litter of pups can be. Certainly not us!

They're 8 1/2 weeks old now, have had their first shots, and been checked out by the vet. No worms! That's the best part! They're cute and smart and energetic.

And 6 of them have found new forever homes.

It wasn't as hard as I thought it would be to let them go, but it's getting harder. Two have gone to family members -- to the Son and Younger Daughter. One has gone to my late best friend's brother's family in Jonesboro. One went to the parents of Younger Daughter's late friend. Another went to the family of one of the Girls' high school buddies. Last night a young E-4 Guardsman and his sweet little family came to take Tank (the largest puppy) home with them. So,then there were three.

One (maybe two) will stay with us. We're contemplating donating one to a service organization for training as a service/companion dog -- maybe Wounded Warriors or Lighthouse for the Blind. Remaining at Moogie's Manor are who we call (L - R) Count Pounce of Bouligny, Bouligny's Mystic Lagniappe (Yep, Murphy, I stole your pup's name! We call her Yap.), and Malcolm in the Middle:

See how big they've gotten! Yesterday evening, the pup (now known as Chelsea) who went to live with the Son's family at "Paulsons' House of Chaos" came for a visit. They played so hard that they were little more than a blur!

This video is a few weeks old, but shows them in action:

Cleaning up after all nine was a chore, but cleaning up after three 8 1/2 week old growing bladders leads me to give you an investment tip: buy stock in paper towel companies! Here are a few more captured cutenesses:

 I have the most toys, so I win.

What do you mean it's morning?

Sleepy? Who's sleepy?

Well, I may have already crossed that threshhold.

Life is good.

Saturday, September 6, 2014

A Day of Firsts at Moogie's Manor

Pepper has just been itching to get the pups outdoors. They're four weeks now, and our yard is nice and clean, so we packed them up in an overnight bag and our arms and introduced them to grass and fresh air:

Mysti and Bouie haven't really had much opportunity to play like they did before the pups were born, so they took full advantage, even allowing one brave pup to join in on the fun.

As you can tell from Pepper's expression, their little claws are getting sharp!

And, when they came back in, they got to experience their first taste of rice cereal. Talk about attack dogs!  They are super huge fans!

Man, what a trip this whole thing has been.

Oh, and Woooo Pig Soooiiieeeeee!!!!!

Friday, September 5, 2014

A Labor Day Weekend to Remember

The joint is jumping at Moogie's Manor!

The puppies are growing!  They're so very smart! At 3 1/2 weeks they figured out to go to the far end of the pen to do their business so they don't soil their sleeping area. We had to abandon the puppy pool because it ceased to be a containment area -- more like a mild obstacle to freedom. Several have been spoken for (including ours!), so I have no doubt they will all find good, loving homes -- many nearby, so we'll be able to follow their progress. They recognize us and want us to play whenever they're awake -- it melts my heart to see a puppy looking at me with affection. And probably hunger! We'll start them on cereal this weekend. Here's a little puppy playtime from this afternoon -- their 4-week birthday (featuring the escape artist I have nicknamed "Dora, the Explorer."):

I was spirited to a friend's cabin on the Little Red River last Friday (Elder Daughter volunteered to spend the night here to watch the puppies) for a delightful evening complete with good food, good conversation, and a long, heavy rainfall which we enjoyed from the screened porch. Pepper got to do a little fly fishing on Saturday morning, and we had a nice lunch at The Red Apple Inn before heading back to Little Rock to watch the Razorbacks "entertain" the Auburn Confused Mascots at The Son's House.

Except, we didn't watch the game at The Son's House. We watched it at Moogie's Manor along with a large number of our friends at my Surprise Sixtieth Birthday party!

To be honest, I had deduced that there was going to be a party, but I had no idea it was going to be here! Daughters cleaned nicely (thank goodness!) and moved (read, "hid") all kinds of tchotchkes so they could do a Moogie-centric decorating scheme, with Razorback flourishes. (I'm still locating stuff!) There was good food, lots of laughs, and semi-decent football (at least until the fourth quarter).

Is that a fabulous cake, or what!

The book is one I gave my mother years ago -- The Southern Lady. I love that my girls think of me that way.

Elder Daughter spent a lot of time in contact with the yearbook at the U of A. They sent her several pics of me that appeared in a Volume from a "few" years back. This is my favorite. It proves to me that I didn't really just make this up in my head. Here is Moogie, calling the Hogs, along with a few friens. Do you see me? There was a lot less of me to love back then:

And, as Younger Daughter pointed out, even Buddha was calling the Hogs!

I have a wonderful, sneaky family!

And, at age 60, I have nine puppies who need to be entertained several times during the night. So, I. Am. Tired!

Happy weekend!

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

And Now, For Your Visual and Listening Pleasure . . .

A Reverse Puppy Oreo:

And Puppy Choir Rehearsal:

I didn't have the video camera turned on the whole time and missed the best "solo."

Tonight, after I had to get up twice last night to replace puppies with wanderlust in the Pool, and Pepper got up once, we're moving them to the bathtub on the other side of the house.

I need a nap.

Monday, August 25, 2014

Puppy Update

The little scudders are growing so fast!  Their eyes are open and they're beginning to try to walk. One of the little Black boys makes a howling sound like a Tribble. And, one of the Yellow girls awoke me at about 3:00 this morning, wailing to beat the band.  She had managed to crawl out of the puppy nursery (wading pool), didn't know where she was, and couldn't get back in! The towel and sheet (now known as the "puppy escape facilitators") have been removed from the puppy pool. Here's a Puppy Pinwheel:

 And a Puppy Pyramid:

And two really cute puppies snuggling:

*ENDORSEMENT ALERT*  MAJOR props and recommendations go out to Freeze Drapery Cleaners & Restoration! You may recall that Mysti started having the puppies while we were out -- she had 3 before we got home. On the sofa in our bedroom! You can imagine what the mess looked like. The good folks at Freeze made that cushion look like new! They even repaired a little rip in a seam! For only $30!!! I'm telling you -- these are exceptional professionals!!

Here's a little cuteness:

I think we're in trouble.

Saturday, August 16, 2014

There's a Whole Lot of Back-scratching Going on in DC

Lest you think that government entities don't "talk" to one another out of some misguided desire to maintain citizens' privacy, allow me to share this little tidbit and disabuse you of that Utopian notion.

Pepper and I are doing a re-fi on Moogie's Manor. Our lender set it up to qualify to run through Fannie Mae (and Fannie Mae is not even a real federal government entity, you understand) for secondary market purposes. To make her happy and feed her enormous ego, one must submit some thirty-odd pages of Application to Miss Mae, including one's most recent tax return.

Here's where it starts getting a little complicated.

Due to some investments and partnerships, we always get an extension to file our 1040s until October. This means the last Returns we have on hand at present are for 2012. Not 2013. Fannie Mae was not happy about this. Even though she has nothing to do with collecting taxes, she wanted to talk to her buddies over at the IRS to be sure we had filed an actual Extension and weren't just slacking and failing to file. She scratches her IRS-Bud's back and they scratch something of hers. I mean, the revenue we pump into the IRS is shared by the whole government, right?

Anyway, there's some silly federal rule designed to protect the privacy of we insignificant citizens, and Fannie Mae isn't permitted to talk to Internal Revenue without the citizen's permission. So, she has a handy-dandy form that the citizen "may" sign that says, in essence, "Sure! You gubmint guys chat about me and share anything about me with one another that your nosy little bureaucratic hearts desire! Live it up!"

Let's stop here briefly to reflect upon the fact that Fannie Mae has nothing to do with collecting or disbursing or determining the amount of taxes that anyone pays. Let's further reflect upon the fact that whether you file your tax returns has nothing to do with whether you can re-pay a loan.

Then let's think about the fact that your loan application will be peremptorily rejected if you refuse to authorize Miss Mae to snoop into your IRS records to satisfy her overactive curiosity and/or to give her ammunition to rat your slacking butt out to the IRS. Even though she has zero to do with taxes!

Did we sign it? Well, duh. (But only after a colorful rant about crony government and Big Brother by my roommate.) Just don't let yourself be fooled into believing that there's a functional firewall among government entities that protects we, the people.

And do not get Pepper started on Fannie Mae. He's been mumbling something about a class action lawsuit.

Wednesday, August 13, 2014

We Have Grandpuppies! LOTS of Grandpuppies.

Nine, to be precise! Five boys and 4 girls, healthy, squirmy, and exercising stronger voices by the day! They were born Friday night, after we had gone to Elder Daughter's to watch the Saints game, of course. By the time we got home, at about 9:00, she had already whelped three of them -- on the couch in our bedroom. (I took the couch cushion to the cleaners this morning -- we shall see. We can always turn the cushion over, but I do hope they can get any odor out of it.) The couch, pre-birthing suite (you don't really want to see the post- view):

I gathered up the pups and got them to the pool, where Mysti quickly joined them. Pepper worked on the couch and carpet for awhile. And my purse, which had a little puppy residue in it, too. I know -- gross. Daughters and DiLshowed up after eight had arrived and we thought that was all of them. Pretty cool -- 8 puppies born on 8/8! Daughters headed home, but DiL stayed for a bit. After 30 minutes or so, she said, "Is that another one?" I thought, surely not -- it's been so long since the last. But, sure enough here came another -- the largest one yet! We did have to help break the sac, though.

Younger Daughter was pretty concerned about the runt, who had a little trouble latching onto Mama. She did internet research, gave us an eyedropper from Grand #5's diaper bag to try a Karo Syrup coating on one of the teats, and just fussed in general. Fortunately, the little guy got the hang of it eventually and is growing like Topsy.

I took this shot the first time Mysti voluntarily left the puppy "bed" (that's spelled "pink, plastic wading pool!").

I promise I didn't place the pups in this shot -- they just kinda wound up like this.

Bouie has been feeling a trifle marginalized the last few days -- a tad on the needy side. He has wound up in bed with us for the last several nights. Not a good thing -- he's a bed hog.

Yesterday, Pepper distracted Mysti and Bouie so I could take the pups to the Vet to have their dew claws removed. (The useless little claws are removed so they don't get caught and ripped off in brush and stuff, thus risking infection.) Here they are, going on their first field trip. Can you believe I got them all in a laundry basket? They really seemed to enjoy the car rides!

Several of them like to sing with their supper. Pretty funny.

We have homes for several of them, but we'll keep one. Bouie's and Mysti's bloodlines are just too good not to be preserved, but I doubt we'll be having puppies around here anymore. We're too darned old to have 9 infants in the house! Especially after bedtime! But the cuteness factor is pretty cool, and Mysti is such a good little Mama! I'm really proud of her (and grateful! Can you imagine bottle-feeding nine puppies?!?!)

I need a nap.