Tag Archives: home

10/4/15 The Tiki Bar

Mom survived the party with the Outlaws yesterday, and took her “revenge” on Dad today by making him complete the Tiki bar. Not that she didn’t let him watch the football game, but still. Today was a day of “recreational working”.

This isn’t exactly a how-to, but I want you all to know that I supervised this project very closely.

To recap, first Dad procured some pallets from his job (free) and the humans painted them with some deck paint.

Once dry, they moved them to the basement where Dad assembled them in a semi-L shape. I say “semi L” because the pieces weren’t completely flush for stability purposes.

Dad got out his handy power screwdriver. It’s noisy, but gets the job done.

screwdriver

Mom doesn’t like the sound of the drill – too much like the dentist.

supervisor

As you can see, I’m keeping a close eye on Dad.

Once the pallets were stabilized, Jamie stapled on some grass skirting that the humans bought at the hobby store in the party section. The grass table skirts were about $6.

Dad and Mom went to the home improvement store, and bought a kitchen counter that was a little over five feet in length. At about $44, this was the most expensive part of the Tiki bar. Dad and Mom attached the counter to the skirted pallets with L brackets and screws.

Mom finished decorating the Tiki bar with things she’d bought at the dollar store. She took the stools from the kitchen that weren’t being used for the front of the bar. In total, the bar cost about $65 to make.

tikibardone

Because Mom hung a boogie board (also from the dollar store) behind the bar, she christened it, “The Boogie Board Bar”.

Here’s Dad, Erik, and Jamie all smiling for the camera! Everyone listened to some Hawaiian slack-key guitar music and had some refreshments.

tikifamily

On the other side of the basement, Dad put up the inflatable hot tub. We’re going to fill it next week!

Mom says it will be summer forever in the house. She says she’s very proud of everyone for getting this project accomplished (and for under $80, too!)

Woof! Love, Maggie

5/12/15 My Two-Year Family-versary!

Two years ago today, my life changed forever.

I was not much more than a puppy myself when I was bred, my pups taken, and I was kicked out, shivering, into the cruel streets and the snow. Cold, frightened, confused, terrified even – I still trusted humans enough to let the kind people at the Animal Welfare League pick me up and bring me back to the shelter. I was grateful for a temporary home and to be out of the brutal Chicago winter. I was incredibly sad about my puppies.

However, although I was out of the elements, my future was uncertain and the months dragged by. I got sick twice. I wondered what would happen to me. The bright spots in my day were when the volunteers took me out and played with me. I loved that. But my anxiety and stress increased every day. I had a large sore on the top of my head from where I’d taken to banging it against the top of the metal cage.

Then on May 12, 2013, I met the people that I knew would be my family. True, they walked slowly amongst the kennels and looked at every dog. But they kept coming back to me.

When a shelter worker brought me to the back room to meet them, I tried to explain to them that they were MY people, by kissing them, hugging them, and leaning up against them with all my might. Truthfully I thought my legs were going to give out from underneath me. I never wanted to let go.

Oh, the joy I felt! I could tell they loved me back. The pats, kisses, smiles, hugs. They never wanted to let go, either. I wanted to go home with them there and then, but I had to have a “spay” first. The nice shelter people were going to watch over me a for day or two after the surgery, but my new family was so worried that AWL let them come and take me home just a few hours later. It was a delicate ride, with Dad going very slowly and watching every bump and pothole!

Like I said, that was two years ago. I still remember every detail. I remember the smiles radiating from Jamie and Mom; the smell of Dad’s hand as he reached out to – very gently! – pat my fur.

My life is so different now, so changed, and not just because I have a soft bed to sleep on and Mom’s arm around me every night. It’s because I have a stable home, an adoring family, and all the love that my big, big heart can hold. Sometimes, I’m so happy, I think it’s bursting!

It’s so good to have a place called, “home”.

Woof! Love, Maggie

happydog

11/14/13 The Homecoming

I’m back.  Oh my gosh, I’m back, and I thought I had been re-homed forever.

It’ll take me a couple of blogs to get everything out.  But first, let me tell you about The Homecoming.

I had my day, which was so much like the others lately.  The man (his name is Daryl) took me to the Obedience College and we worked, just like we had been working at the strange house with all the other dogs.  I was tired.  I was itchy.  I was lonely and thought my family had abandoned me and that I would never see them again.  I know I had been a bit out of control but I couldn’t remember any specifics. 

Daryl gave me a bath with oatmeal shampoo.  It felt so good, and I wagged my tail at him so hard I chipped the tip and started to bleed a little bit.  Daryl put me in his truck, because it was cold outside and dirty in the school, and he wanted me to dry off where it was warmer and cleaner.

I lay in the back of the truck, wondering what was going to happen to me now.  I had done everything this man had asked me to do.  Was it time to go back to the crate?  But it wasn’t.

Daryl came and got me from the truck.  He brought me back to the arena in the school.  He put me on the lead and gave me all my commands.  I sat, walked, trotted, made left turns, made right turns, sat some more, stayed, and did the recall and return. 

Suddenly, Daryl put his hand in the air and waved.  From behind a wall full of black windows, My Family came out!  I couldn’t believe it was them!  Mom came out first, then Dad, then Jamie.  Perhaps they had forgiven me for whatever it was that I had done wrong, and came to take me back home!  I couldn’t dare to hope, but my eyes glistened and my ears stood straight up.  They walked toward me, smiling, and stopped at the entrance of the arena.  My heart was pounding.

Daryl had me at the sit position, but as Mom approached the arena, he let me stand up.  I wagged my tail; no, I waved it around; no, I spun it in a circle like the helly-copters that fly over our backyard.  I stood there, all my senses cocked and ready, my nerves straining, but I did not jump.  Mom scratched me under the chin and told me she’d missed me.  I looked up at her and saw the tears in her eyes. 

Then Jamie came over, and I was so glad to see him.  Daryl told my family, “only scratch her under the chin for now” and so Jamie did.  Then Dad came up, and I made a little submissive bow.  “She’s good for you,” Daryl said.  “She knows you are the alpha.” 

Daryl went on, explaining as he jabbed a finger at each human:  “You, she sees as the boss.  You, she sees as a playmate/littermate. And you,” he finished, poking a finger in the air toward Mom, “You are both female, so she doesn’t know what is going on.  Having her sleep in the bed is making it worse, because she is making you two equal.  From now on, she sleeps in her crate.”

I vaguely overheard the word, “crate” but honestly, I was so busy feeling like I was going to shed human tears, that I didn’t care. 

Daryl gave the lead to each member of my family, one at a time, and had them take turns walking me, sitting, returning, staying.  I did all my commands.  My family was proud of me and they all said that my hard work looked like it had paid off (at least for now).   Daryl said, “She’s all yours!” and we headed toward the door.  Daryl gave Mom a piece of paper and invited us for 8 Advanced Training classes, so he can check our progress and help us move forward.  Before we left, Dad bought a bottle of that spray that tastes so awful to take home in case I start chewing.

Dad had the big van to take me home.  I thought Zeus would be there, but I guess he’s too small for all of us.  I curled up on the seat of the van, next to Jamie, and closed my exhausted eyes.  I gave one thump with my tail on the seat.  I hadn’t been given away.  My heartbeat was starting to go back to normal.  I was finally, finally, finally, going home.

Love, Maggie