Volunteering…

I’m volunteering. It’s true. They were asking for people at work and I just couldn’t say no. It was for such a good cause…

The cause is a really good cause and we’re doing great work and making a huge difference. That’s all fantastic news and really really good. The problem is that volunteering takes about 2.5 to 3 hours after work and it is every blessed day.

Every. Day.

But it’s for a really, really good cause.

My hubby barely sees me during the week now, though he tries to be supportive of this cause. But, this is why I have been less prolific with my little blog lately.

The good news is that our goal is coming up soon and this volunteering should end.

The bad news is that my hubby tried to cook to help me…

These were once asparagus…

He was much more successful at purchasing Ocean a little gift…

Ocean is thinking about forgiving me from all the time I’ve been away. This new cushion also helped ease the tension…

Though her Fluffiness did only use it once…Apparently, it wasn’t the exact colour she liked…

Finally, to tempt me to stay home, my hubby has been sending me pictures of cute akita puppies…the idea being if we have two dogs, I’ll stay home more…

Is it a house or a home?

They say it takes a year for a house to become a home. I had never heard that before we moved to our present house but it certainly didn’t feel like home when we walked in. As time passed and I walked around the place expecting the old owners to come in and kick us out, I wondered just how true that saying was.

Our previous house was a tiny, cozy thing, just right for two people. By contrast, this house is big and poky, with doors, hallways and stairs everywhere. When I first saw it, I thought it’d be the perfect house for witches to live in–if they used a gas fireplace and needed air conditioning.

It’s been a year and things have changed. This is where Ocean got really sick and we almost lost her. It’s where the fence failed and our dogs got to run freely down the neighbourhood. It’s where my hubby built a dog castle.

We’ve made some memories here.

Maybe, just maybe, it’s starting to feel like home.

Covid races

Our neighbour told us. If we hurried, if we really hurried, we could get our vaccines. They were giving them out at the local market just over there. And we didn’t need an appointment.

We ran.

But the speed of a car, even one driven like a maniac, can’t beat that of gossip. By the time we got there, the word was out and the line up was massive.

We never even slowed down. We ran up to the last spot and breathlessly took our place in line…And then we waited…and waited…and waited some more.

Waiting isn’t exactly an absorbing occupation. Half an hour later, we had learned all we could about the vegetables on the stands and we turned to the people around us. How did you hear about this? Have you registered anywhere yet?

This was where it started to get weird. One person was certain that we could register online and get an appointment in a certain Walmart because she knew the owner. Another knew a guy who would give anyone vaccines that were off-market but still could beat the virus. Someone else claimed they could get an appointment for anyone using a fake address in Toronto. One even claimed she could make a vaccine out of some common household items and she guaranteed it worked. It seemed everyone knew someone who had gotten a vaccine in under 10 minutes using a trick or a gimmick.

I was about to try a strange website that someone was vowing was fail-proof to get us vaccinated when the market manager appeared and told us they had run out of vaccines.

On the other hand, if anyone is interested in a homemade vaccine, I know a recipe that’s guaranteed to work…

Morning kisses

We have morning kisses in our house. They don’t actually involve my husband and I. They involve…well, our doggies.

It started innocently enough, with me giving our two pooches kisses after they ate their breakfast. I was just hugging and petting them because they’re simply adorable and so loving that I couldn’t hold back the kisses.

Soon, though, it turned into something bigger. Ocean started ignoring her breakfast until she had received her ‘quota’ of kisses. And now, her bowl of food doesn’t have the attraction my smile and hands do. Her ears flatten sideways, her tail waves like crazy and she wiggles her entire body dancing her way towards me; thrilled at the prospect of those kisses.

It’s a mutual thing. I believe there is something therapeutic in seeing a little creature closing her eyes with bliss while I kiss her forehead and ask her how her night was. I whisper softly into her ears and tell her I love her and that she’s going to have a lovely day and I believe I get more out of it than she does.

My hubby, the therapist explained to me that witnessing something horrific is traumatic for those who see it. I believe the opposite is therapeutic. It certainly feels like it. When I kiss River’s flat, soft head and tell him that there is a sunny-filled day waiting for him outside and he closes his eyes and sighs, I can feel a part of me heal.

Best therapy in the world.

Shhhh

So, here’s the thing. I kiss my doggies. I hug and pet them and whisper things to them and ask them questions. I rub their tummies and tickle their bellies and kiss their ears. They love it and I love it. I do it all the time and it often involves me rolling around with them.

My lovely hubby has told me time and time again that I should keep my distance a little bit and that shoving my face into their fur is not a good idea. But, what does he know, right?

Well, this morning I woke up with one eye open and the other closed. I have an eye infection.

I’m honestly hoping he won’t notice…a lot.

In other news, I did finish my painting.

On happiness

“You know, the house is all wired for a hot tub.”

This was said by my lovely hubby, who has been hinting at getting one of those things for weeks now. I have argued against it because they are super expensive and we already have an indoor pool. Add a hot tub and we’ll never get rid of the house guests.

My reasons don’t seem to be making a difference. He’s pretty determined. It’s the one thing, he claims that will ensure his happiness.

I should really give him a quote on happiness from the Buddha.

Top 50 inspirational Buddha quotes on Happiness | Volume 5 | Buddha quotes  in English | Motivation - YouTube

Or maybe I should just show him this picture. River is a master of happiness. And all he needs is…kisses.

On veganism

Well, turns out, being vegan didn’t agree with me. About a month ago, I wasn’t feeling quite well and, after some bloodwork, it turns out I am anemic. So, I now take iron supplements and have to eat meat like a lion in the jungle.

Now, I’m not saying that being vegan is unhealthy. I am sure there are vegans out there who are thriving on the regime. It just seems to not work for me. And it’s a shame, because I was sort of into it.

Now, after hearing that we’re back to eating animals, my cooking ideas sort of dried up. I didn’t know how to cook (and still have no idea) meat. I stared at chicken breasts with dread fearing salmonella and other unseen dangers. What I have finally come up with is buying cooked chickens or cooked hams or cooked meat and doing a side dish.

My side dishes don’t have to be vegan but this one is. It’s a macaroni and cheese side dish that goes well with any meat and is to die for. I got it from Oh She Glows, of course, and the cheese sauce alone made my husband give me a glare.

“Why haven’t you made this before!” he asked through a mouthful.

Obviously, it was a hit.

Finished

Well, it was never going to be a thing of beauty and certainly the architectural tectonics were never going to win any prizes. Still, it’s finished. Done.

Yeap. The dogs don’t know what to do with it…and the humans aren’t that certain either.

What is it?

I did mention that my lovely hubby wanted to make a sort of dog-house/ramp, right? Well, it’s happening. Believe it or not, this…thing is now in our backyard.

It is…well, I don’t know what it is and I have doubts that my hubby does either. He’s there with a friend, nailing and cutting and laughing and building. The dogs are with them too, oblivious at the purpose of the ruckus around them.

There have been mistakes made, bandaids requested and cookies baked. The dogs are covered in saw dust and the men are exhausted. Still, construction continues.

I’m certain most of the birds in the neighbourhood are hoping this is somehow going to be a house for them. Considering the success of our previous dog houses, they might be the only ones using the thing.

Whatever it is.

Musings on a Sunday morning

I don’t like change. So, when we moved homes, I thought I would have a little trouble adjusting. I wasn’t prepared for my resistance to the new home. I had picked the house with my hubby after all; I should be happy to live there.

The house didn’t feel scary or weird. It just felt…strange. I didn’t see it as ours and there were nooks and crannies that I thought were not for us.

It’s been months since the move. You’d think I would have gotten used to the house by now but I’m still struggling. Certainly, there are parts that feel more homey now but there is still a lingering feeling of living in a stranger’s house.

It helps that I have added plants to most rooms. I love plants. There are some that are growing in delight and their new buds make me smile every time I see them.

It helps that our two pooches have no such issues. They run around and bounce on the ‘guest’ beds with delight leaving doggie footprints all over the fresh sheets and giving those strange rooms a touch of ‘doggie’. Most people would be rightfully upset at the mess but, I’m silly about my dogs, I love every bit of them, even their rambunctiousness.

It helps to clean the house. I have done loads of laundry, cleaned floors, moped cobwebs and dusted nooks and crannies. I even moped the walls of some rooms. Poking around like that, I have found light switches that don’t turn anything on, remotes for non-existing machines and a very nice-looking pool cue. I still have to check out the attic. I wonder what mysteries lie in that space.

Then my husband said something that made me pause. He said, maybe we should get another dog…And all silly thoughts about the house immediately flew out of my head. Instead, I dreamed a happy dream…