Friday, April 8, 2011

"Journaling" through photos

This first month of spring has seemed to have been a busier month than usual for me (as evidenced by lack of blogging). For some reason, however, when I look back to the past several week, what have I done with my time? It didn't occur to me until a week ago that I should take more photos if I don't have time to write. Perhaps the photos will help jog my memory as to what has happened - or in some desprate cases, replace my writing.

Para Los Ninos

Part of my time has been consumed by my new employer, Para Los Ninos. Hired as a temporary assistant for their upcoming fundraising event, I've greatly scaled back my time wtih the kids' school. Instead of helping out at the kids' school four days a week, I'm now working four days a week with one day at the school. My one day at school, I still manage to meet with Lolli's advanced reading group and do guided reading in 'Shroom's class (while he's in the Learning Center).

If you're not going to be part of the one billion people expected to watch the royal wedding on 4/29/11 and are local to the Los Angeles area, feel free to purchase a ticket and support a good cause through our Cinco de Mayo celebration event!

A Potential Second Westward Migration?!

A couple of weeks ago, my parents came out to visit us and "scout" out possible retirement communities. It was a busy four days but we managed to make the most of every day. Between Air Boss taking a day off to show them a retirement community in Orange County and me taking a day off to tour local retirement communities closer to us, I think my parents got a good feel for the areas. 'Shroom and Lolli of course relished their time with their grandparents. Regardless of where my parents choose to live, they have both decided that it makes sense to downsize and say good-bye to the home that has been theirs for 40 years. It will be a huge undertaking to whittle down their life's possessions to a new "down-sized" home. I'm sure I'll be blogging about this topic in future days to come.

Some Good (Dog) Days and Some Bad (Dog) Days

Since my last blog, I'm sure you're wondering if Skye is still living with us. In a nutshell . . . yes. She's been with us for two months now and I still miss my dog-free days of sleeping in without having to walk a dog, vacuuming no more than once a week, and untainted unmarked green lush grass.

Somehow Skye managed to fool us all and graduate from her intermediate dog obedience class. She had to complete an "obstacle course" consisting of orange cones with doggie treats on top. She had to stop at each cone, perform some commands without touching or eating any of the treats. The first time through, she was prompted with both voice and hand commands. The second time through, she was prompted with voice-only commands. And the final time through, she was prompted with hand-only commands. It was a silent and tense last run of the course.

So now you're wondering, is she the perfect well-behaved dog? A show dog with enviable skills and well-adapted social behaviors that make her seem more mature than her puppy dog look?

Well, as they say, a picture is worth a thousand words. This photo was taken just yesterday. I'm surprised the photo wasn't more blurry as my hands were shaking from rage at what the dog had just done in our backyard. While this is not the first time she's gone digging in our backyard (and tearing up the grass), this is the deepest. She found the buried sprinkler pipe and dug even deeper for who knows what. We caught her in the act and I made sure that I made the most of that opportune moment.

Since the grass is gone in that spot and she will likely dig in the same place, we have one of our patio chairs standing "guard" over the hole until we can figure out what to do. As I'm still trying to reconcile if this dog is worth it all (read: "should I turn her over to the shelter or post her on craigslist?"), someone did remind me that the damage could have been worse. She could have chewed the PVC pipe in half.

But Let's Not End on Such a Downer

The kids are finishing up their spring break. They both came down with fifth disease just before the start of their vacation but luckily they both bounced back rather quickly. I miss spending their spring break week with them. We're looking forward to the weekend ahead before school resumes again next week. [note to self: call orthodontist to schedule consult for 'Shroom]