Sunday, March 16, 2014

For the love of cupcakes

I was browsing the internet and discovered a hilarious Youtube video, When the dog stays at home. Not only is the video awesome in its own right, but it makes me think about what Charlie would do if he was left to roam around the house on his own.

The last time we were able to leave Charlie home alone without his kennel was when he was a puppy. We blocked off the kitchen from the rest of the house, allowing him access to only that one room. This lasted for a week when one day we came home to find the kitchen rug ruined, the woodwork of the door scratched to the point of shreds, and gnawed up kitchen table legs. This traumatic situation for both Charlie and us, his owners, means Charlie will always stay home in the kennel.

However, this week, Michelle received a glimpse of what may happen when we are not around. She brought home a cupcake from Jones Bros. Cupcakes and left the kitchen only to return to this:

Apparently, Charlie loves cupcakes.

However, Charlie pretty much loves anything to do with humans. Or food. Because later that same week I did a quick cleaning of the refrigerator, dumping some leftovers that had been in there too long. Mistakenly, I left the garbage out of the cupboard in the kitchen and it didn't take very long for Charlie to chow down on some delicious, old food.

Sunday, March 9, 2014

Lenten goals and Charlie's teeth cleaning saga

Charlie has two states of mind: intensity and passivity. When he is not sleeping or cuddling with one of us he is going crazy chasing his toys, following us around the house, or demanding our affection.

In comparison, I oftentimes feel like life is too frantic and intense. This week we kicked off the annual season of Lent and instead of giving up something this year, I've decided that I'm going to actively work on doing something this year. Like Charlie, I sometimes feel like I'm constantly active, devoted to liveliness, headed a certain direction, and focused on accomplishment. While there is nothing wrong with living a full life of activity, there is much to be desired about moments of serenity. Solitude is important for relaxation, reflection, thinking, and listening. My goal is to practice some sort of mindfulness every day. I want to create a routine of carving out moments of time for rejuvenation. And since we will have an infant in our home in a couple of months, I'm anticipating that creating mindful habits will be necessary.

While I focus on more mindfulness, Charlie is basically unable to maintain a calm serene state for any period of time, unless he is under the influence of mood altering substances. This happened this week for his annual teeth cleaning. The vet sedated Charlie to do some serious plaque removal and the effects of the drugs lasted for almost an entire day following the appointment.

When I arrived at the vet in the afternoon to pick Charlie up, he calmly came out of the backroom with the staff, not pulling on his leash at all. He cautiously, with his tail curved down between his legs trying to wag, approached the other patrons in the waiting area to sniff them. He was unable to jump up and meet them as they commented on his cuteness. While I appreciated this obedient side of Charlie, I knew it was an induced state keeping his true personality down.

Things really were not normal when I put him in his kennel in the back seat of the car on the way home. He immediately laid down, rather than protesting excitedly and making agitated monkey sounds the entire time he was in the car. 

Usually when we get home, he runs around the backyard and onto the porch steps waiting to go inside the house. But this time, he just couldn't quite get his back legs to cooperate with the front ones as he casually strolled along the sidewalk and carefully waddled up the two steps to the back door.

I was quite amused when he didn't care to follow me around the house once inside. Normally Charlie will run up and down the stairs to keep up with me but those same stairs had now become a daunting (and almost dangerous) proposition. A drugged up Charlie was quite hilarious. I could tell the poor guy wanted to break out and act like his crazy self, but was just unable to figure out what had happened. The sofa, left in a reclining position, was where he finally planted himself once he bravely took the leap to get up there.