Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Lists

Whenever I'm going somewhere out of the ordinary, I usually make lists.  Because I tend to forget stuff.  This time, I've been so dang busy, I haven't had time to make lists.

For one thing, I'm nearing the end of the first draft of Shade of the Wolf.  It's due 8-15 and will be out January 2015, I believe.  I'm really liking where the book ended up going, though I'm having to make notes of various threads I need to tie up.  Once I get that finished, I can go back and edit.  And then turn it in!

Hair done, check.  Even though I was loving my red shade and sort of wish I'd just stuck with that.  I got blonde highlights put in and now my hair is really, really dry.  Blech.

Toenails done.  Dresses chosen.  Groceries bought (requested by my sitter.)

Still must pack.  Housecleaners are here cleaning, so my home will be nice and need for my house-sitter/dog-sitter.

I leave tomorrow.  The conference has already started and tonight is the big literacy signing, which I won't be attending.  But my Friday is packed full with meetings - editor breakfast, editor lunch, friend dinner, publisher party.  Saturday I have brunch with my agent, and then we have dinner reservations at our fav place (Boudro's).  It's going to fun.   I so can't wait.



Monday, July 21, 2014

Anticipation

This week (THIS.  WEEK.) is the National Romance Writer's of America conference.  The last time I attended one was in 2009 in Washington, D.C.

This one is in San Antonio, TX.  One of my favorite cities.  A place where Lonnie and I always have fun.

So I'm going.  Not for the entire thing - it starts with a massive Literacy Signing on Wednesday, which I'll have to miss.  We're going down on Thursday.  It's difficult when you have three dogs.  I found a house sitter and dog sitter who is coming to stay with my babies.

I have scheduled meetings - breakfast with the senior editor of one line that I write for, lunch with my editor, brunch with my agent, and dinner with a dear, good friend who I haven't seen for five years.  Plus there's THE party of the year - Harlequin's annual bash.  This involves desserts and drinking and dancing and lots of fun.

We also made reservations at our favorite restaurant - Boudro's.  The food is to die for.



And you can get a REALLY good margarita on the Riverwalk.



The last time we went was in 2012, so it's time.  I love San Antonio.  Work combined with pleasure.  Can't beat the combo.



Friday, July 18, 2014

Happy Early Birthday, Mac Macadoo

Yesterday, we celebrated my beautiful Liberty Belle's third birthday.  Tomorrow is my first Boxer dog Mac Macadoo's eight birthday.  I call him my gateway Boxer.

A little backstory.  After my precious Cody (Border Collie) died at the old age of nearly 15, Lonnie and I swore off big dogs.  We had our two Mini-Schnauzers Daisy and Mitchell, and two little dogs was just perfect for us.  Or so we thought.

Except it seemed everywhere I went, I'd meet a Boxer.  We went camping and a beautiful, friendly Boxer from the campsite behind us brought me his frisbee and then showered me with Boxer kisses.  I was enchanted.  I took one of my dogs to the vet, and there in the waiting room was another Boxer.  I was seeing them everywhere.  I wanted one, but still was not convinced.

So I did what I always do.  Research.  I purchased several books about Boxers and everything I read about them made me think they were my kind of dog.  Goofy, loving, kindhearted.  But big.  Did I mention we said no more big dogs?

One day I was reading about Boxers on the internet (I tend to obsess when I'm interested in something) and came across these pictures at at Boxer breeder in Oklahoma with puppies for sale.  This male pup was just about 8 weeks old and ready to go to his new home.  I just melted.



I knew Lonnie though, and I knew he'd say no.  After all, we had two dogs, little dogs.  We didn't need a big dog, did we?  My heart said we did.

So, as wives sometimes do to get their way, I lied.  I told him I'd paid a $200 non-refundable deposit.  He was furious, but he didn't want to lose that money, so he snarled "Fine."  I then quietly paid the deposit via paypal and we made arrangements with the breeder to go pick up our new puppy.  (Yes, I told Lonnie the truth eventually.)

Funny thing.  We drove up to Oklahoma - the breeder lived in Pryor which is about 10 hours away, but met us in McAlister, which is only 5.  As we pulled up to the agreed meeting spot, I got the rest of the money out of my purse and Lonnie got out to go talk to the guy.  The first thing I hear from Lonnie is "Oooooooh."  I think he fell in love with Macadoo on the spot.

Here he is on the way home.



We got him home and he wasn't any bigger than my Mini Schnauzers.  At first.



Even after reading all those books, nothing prepared me for the utter craziness of a Boxer puppy.  He was a handful, to put it mildly.  Luckily, I worked with him and trained him to heel and sit and down and wait.  The most difficult thing for him to learn was his recall.  I spent weeks working with him on that.  But finally, he would come when I called him.  He was so unruly that Lonnie swore we'd never have another Boxer (hah!)

Here he is at age one.  Such a beautiful boy.


He learned to swim - and loves it.  He was my high-diving Boxer.  (He doesn't do that anymore since he's older.)




He's even suffered the indignity of allowing me to dress him up for Halloween





 And wore reindeer antlers at Christmas (not happily!)




In the 8 years since, he has been a pure joy.  He's everything the books say Boxers are, except he's a bit reserved with strangers (unless they have a ball!)







He's gotten gray in the muzzle, and moves a bit more slowly, but he's still goofy and sweet.  We love him. We Adore him.  He will forever have a special place in our hearts.





Happy 8th Birthday, my sweet Macadoo.





Thursday, July 17, 2014

Happy Birthday Libby!

Today, three years ago, my special girl Boxer dog was born.  I confess, even though I am now a dog rescuer, I purchased her from a breeder in Oklahoma.  The breeder was the daughter of the breeder from whom I purchased Mac Macadoo.

I purchased her from a picture on the breeder's web page.  The breeder named her Cricket.  It's easy to see why.



I paid a deposit, as she was too young to leave her litter.  The breeder sent me updated pictures periodically.  Here's one they sent of her at about six or seven weeks old.


It was a 10 hour drive to where the breeder lived in Pryor, Oklahoma.  My daughter came over to stay with our other dogs and we left early on 9-11-11 to pick her up.  On the way there, we passed numerous ceremonies going on since it was the 10th anniversary of 9-11.  This is why we named her Liberty Belle. When we finally arrived at the ranch, she was all wiggles and kisses.  The cutest, tiniest, sweet baby girl.



We got her home and she was a holy terror, as all puppies are (especially Boxer puppies!)  But she was so cute, you could only love her.


Libby was a sickly puppy - allergic to every protein we tried.  We finally settled on Salmon and Sweet Potato Limited Ingredient food, eventually switching to Venison and Sweet Potato.  She has since had to have both anal glands removed as she developed tumors, though her food allergies went away.

She learned to swim - which she loves now.


And she turned one year old.

She is the friendliest of all my dogs, my dog ambassador.  Even my former foster dog Katniss - who does not like other dogs - liked her.


She's beautiful and sweet.  And bossy.  Very, very bossy.  






And now she's three.  Happy Birthday, sweet Libby.  We love you very much.




Love my tiny pocket Boxer!


Monday, July 14, 2014

Monday

It's Monday.  I survived the root canal (yes!) and yet still hurt.  It's getting less each day, but I'm not exercising or anything until it's all better.  I have to take Amoxicillian every 6 hours (four times a day) and I'm taking Aleve every 12 hours for the pain.

I go back on the 22nd to get fitted for the crown.

Despite that, we had a nice weekend.  We swam and cooked out - turkey burgers on Saturday and Teriyaki chicken legs on Sunday.  My daughter came over on Sunday.  All the dogs are exhausted from two days of swimming, which is great.  A tired dog is a good dog.

Also I got my photos back from the photographer I hired to take pics of me and of the dogs.  I even got Lonnie to be in a couple of them.  I put them on Facebook, so forgive the repetition.

Here are some of my favorites.  Here's me with Peyton



Here's me with Macadoo


And me with Liberty (Libby)


And here is a shot of Lonnie and me with all three of the Boxers

 Pretty cool, huh?


Thursday, July 10, 2014

Ouch

Yesterday I went to the dentist to have  filling done.  At 4 am I came awake with throbbing pain in the same filling.  I called the dentist, they said to come in, and the next thing I knew I was getting a root canal.  It did not go well.

The first three shots didn't deaden it.  Neither did the second three.  Finally they gave me three more.  Surgical grade, the dentist said.  Still didn't work.

Finally, he told me he'd have to drill into the nerve.  It would be painful, he said.  The idea was to drill into the nerve and shoot some deadening stuff in there.  He said it would be painful..  It was.

So after all this was over, I was supposed to get antibiotics and pain meds.  Someone forget to call in the pain meds.  As i was seriously hurting, I called the dentist emergency number.  End result, I have antibiotics and pain meds.  Feel slightly drunk and hoping I get some sleep tonight.

Throwback Thursday and Other Random Musings

On Facebook, someone started this thing called Throwback Thursday.  The idea is to post an old picture with the hashtag #TBT.

I enjoy seeing the pictures and it's so funny trying to find one to post.  Back in the days of film cameras, we'd have to pay to have photos printed.  Of course those things pile up and no matter how you intend to get them into albums, most times they never make it.  When my mom passed, all of we kids got tons of photos to go through.

It's interesting what I find when I start searching for a photo.  (No, I'm not going to post old photos here.  It's hard enough to find them for Facebook!)

I've found pictures of me with blond hair, brown hair, red hair, curly hair, short hair, long hair.  Pics of me skinny, skinny and young, young. Pictures where I didn't look so skinny, though I always was thinner than I am now.  Sigh.  One of the "benefits" of growing older.

I saw my mom in a lot of pictures.  When she was fat and sassy, before cancer robbed her of so much.  And my husband, also younger, looking dashing.  Oh, and my daughter, who also had blond, blond hair and looked totally different than she does now.

Of course, there were the various beloved dogs, many of them passed to the Rainbow Bridge.  Mandy and Cody, Skipper, and Daisy.  I miss them all.  And my Mitchell, who is now 13, much younger with a darker coat.  Of course the Boxers too.

The past is fun to look at.  Maybe one day I'll do a blog post with pics from various times in my life.  Nah, probably not.  Too much work to dig them out.