Monday, June 30, 2008

We're Adopting a Dog!!!

Just when I thought it couldn't happen. I was just feeling sorry for myself on Friday at the GNO that we would never be able to find an adult dog that we felt comfortable having around the birds. I thought that we would either have to get a puppy or no dog at all. Keeping hope alive, we went to a Stray Rescue adoption event at Four Muddy Paws in Lafayette Square on Saturday. We made our way out to the dogs up for adoption and I chatted with some of the foster parents and volunteers. I noticed Jason talking to a woman with a dog. The dog didn't have a Stray Rescue bandana on, so I figured he was the woman's own pet. As it turns out, she is his foster mom and he was up for adoption.

Now, we have gone to meet several dogs that we've seen online and Jason hasn't really taken the initiative to talk to any of their fosters. It was different with Linda, the foster mom of the dog, Lee. We learned that he is 1-2 years old, is a pit bull mix, and was abandoned by his former owners before Stray Rescue brought him in through their "Abandoned, Not Forgotten" program. He had been living at a vet clinic until his foster home was found. We also learned that even though Linda had only had him for about a week, she was very attached to him because he's such a good boy.

Even with all the other dogs around him, he just sat there and was really mellow. We walked him down the street and he walked perfectly on his leash-no pulling, lots of slack, and wanted to be on the left. We decided we would try him out for Rent-a-Pet. Since we volunteer and they know us, and since we've filled out applications for other dogs in the past, they let us take Lee with us.

He got in the car and went to sleep. I immediately called my sister Jenny so that he could meet Leo. We took them to Forest Park and they enjoyed each other's company. Then the big test. How would he react to Monty and Lola? First we showed them to him in their cages. He was interested, but not overly so. We worked up to getting Monty out and putting him on the coffee table while one person held Lee on his leash nearby. Lee wasn't very interested. When Lola came out and flew laps around the living room, he didn't even stand up. We couldn't ask for anything more than that, considering he just met us and came into our home for the first time.

So, we decided to continue "renting" him overnight.

We had such a fun weekend with him. We took him to the Central West End and ate dinner on a patio, where he just laid down and went to sleep. He met both his grandmas, and played all afternoon on Sunday with his new buddy Leo and my aunt's dog, Blue. He met my two youngest nephews, and was fine with Henry poking his eye and saying, "he has green eyes." He is house- and crate-trained, knows basic commands, and is very quiet. How could we pass this dog up? He's basically perfect.

Oh, and I was worried that Monty would be traumatized by having a huge "predator" at home, but that's not the case. Monty is more curious about Lee than Lee is about him. Monty came right to the bottom of his cage when I first brought Lee over. He walked to the edge of the coffee table, wanting to go over to meet Lee. Scary, but we are being extremely vigilant.

We are currently in the application process and if everything goes well, we can expect to have a new member of the family soon. I have to say that in the last few days, I've thought about my dad less than I have since he died. Not that I'm forgetting about him, but I've been less sad. Dad probably would have been skeptical of a pit bull mix, but would have learned to appreciate what good dog Lee is.

Sorry for the loooooooooong post. I'm sure you'll be hearing a lot about him. We're thinking of changing his name slightly-to Levi. It's still close to Lee, but has two syllables, and is not as close to "Leo."

Jason is not wearing a wife-beater. He just got finished riding and that's what he wears under his jersey.

I love his beautiful eyes:

We took him over to my mom's on Sunday and he had a blast with Leo:

He loves his auntie Jenny already:

I don't think he'll be a swimmer:

And just a shout-out to Linda, Lee's foster mom who is such a nice person. People that foster are truly selfless. They basically take in unwanted animals, get attached to them, then give them up so that they can do it all over again. We hope to keep in touch with Linda over the years:)

More GNO pictures

There are going to be a lot of these floating around the blogosphere since the GNO was such a blast. Rhonda hosted a highly attended, and highly successful (if you measure success by number of empty bottles at the end of the night) "senoritas and margaritas" party at her kick-ass house on Saturday night. Thanks, Rhonda! Here are some highlights. I wish I could hyperlink the photos to everyone's blogs, but that would take me a really long time and I'm really lazy.

Here is the star (not turtle) pinata that Nicole bought and stuffed for the party. It was so thoughtful of her to bring it and put yummy treats inside for us.
Everyone waiting with baited breath and poised cameras:

Nicole not only brought the pinata, but two sexy blindfolds, as well as two kinds of bats:

Rhonda has to hand over Daisy so that she can take whack at the pinata:

Teresa's turn:

Next is Jenn:

And Kristal:
And other Mary:




Finally, we gave up with the blindfolds, and decided to just whack it:

Here come the goodies! Little bottles of booze were the highlight, along with a voodoo doll and glow sticks. Nicole knows how to stuff a pinata!

Yara and Sarah showing off their treasures:

After I confessed my cheese goldfish addiction on the wedding board, Nicole thought of me by putting some in the pinanta! Isn't that thoughtful?

Jenn and her treasure in her, um, treasures:

That's a lot of booze, folks:

Some people put Rhonda's hot tub to use too.

Fun, fun, fun! Can't wait for next month: wine and cheese.

Thursday, June 26, 2008

Introducing Our Dumb Purchase

I'm only bitter about the TV because it ended up costing over $1700 to fix my car. Thank God the clutch didn't need to be replaced. I was carless for three and a half days. I would really consider taking the Metrolink to and from school, but the station on Grand is really sketchy. It's not just the station either, but the walk down Grand on that big bridge. It's full of unsavory characters, and makes the stop by our condo seem safe by comparison. But I digress.

So, here is the before picture. If you look really, really closely, you can see the old TV. It's there, trust me. And I realize that I have way too many pictures and knick-knacks, but I have so few places to display them in our little condo. If I'd included the ceiling, you would notice that the bland white paint did nothing to enhance the crown molding.

And here is the new set-up. We will probably get a new TV stand when we save some more money. We took off the top of the shelving so that the TV would be more eye-level. I have a lot of homeless knick-knacks and pictures now. I will have to fill up all the other surfaces in my condo to compensate for the loss of that one shelf. Jason will also work on hiding all those ugly cords. The TV size seems like overkill, but it will be nice to have a big one when we one day buy a house.

It's driving me crazy that the candlestick on the left is not in the right spot and that the candle is crooked. How did my OCD self let that happen?

I really love the paint color. It's pretty dark, but our condo gets a ton of light-it has both eastern and western exposures. Right now, we've only painted the one wall. Once again, we used the Sherwin Williams Harmony paint. The color is "thunderous." Monty thought he hit the jackpot because we brought their cages into the bedroom the night we painted just in case there were any fumes that we couldn't detect.

Just for fun, here's a picture of Monty eating a cheese goldfish. He holds his food in his foot like that. You can also see his still bare belly. Let's not go there.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Hot or Not? Clive Owen

I'm sooooooooo not motivated today, so will do a quick blog post. This one is a no-brainer for me, but I am curious to hear what you all think of Clive Owen. He might be one of those people that you can't fully appreciate until you hear (not only does he have a sexy voice in general, but an accent as well), and see in action. I particularly loved him in "Sin City."

So, what do you think?

Verdict: HOT!

Monday, June 23, 2008

Of COURSE it broke down!

So, I purchased my tiny RCA TV around 10 years ago during college. I've considered upgrading it every now and again, but I've always found better things to spend my money on. Poor Jason has even endured watching sports and movies on my tiny little TV all these years, where we have to approach it to see what the score is. WELL, I decided that it was time for us to take the plunge and upgrade. Big time. We called Jason's friend who is obsessed with electronics and he gave us the low down on the latest and greatest models. We went to Circuit City and compared Sony and Samsung LCD flat-screens. We were going to get a 40" or 42", but decided on the 46".

As an aside, we always made fun of my dad because he'd go buy all this stuff that he didn't need, or would never learn how to (fully) use, just because it was better and more expensive. So, I sort of felt like he was whispering in my ear to get the bigger TV. Luckily, Jason asked if they had any specials going on, and they found it for $200 cheaper on the Circuit City website. Sold! We even spent last night painting the wall it will go in front of so that we wouldn't have to deal with the hassle once it was set up.

Still reeling from how much money we spent on a TV, I got in the car this morning to go to school. And my clutch is broken. Completely broken. Oh, did I mention that it has less than 50,000 miles and this is the second time I've had to get it towed? I will never buy another Volvo. It was a miracle the nice tow-truck driver got it out of the garage under my condo without scratching it. Now I'm just waiting on the call to hear how many hundreds (thousands?) of dollars this is going to cost. Nothing like dropping loads of dough a completely frivolous item, to then have your car break down the next day. Ugh. I promise to post pics of our new set-up with the paint color when we have it all arranged.

In the meantime, let's go to a happy place, shall we? Sunset in St. Barth's:

Friday, June 20, 2008

Movie Fans in St. Louis

Just a quick post to pass along some info for people that live in St. Louis and like to watch movies from the 80s. The Moolah Theatre and Lounge is the BEST movie theater in St. Louis. If you haven't been there, you really need to go. It's inside of a beautiful old Moolah Shrine. The screen is enormous. Best part? If you get there early, you can snag a leather couch to watch the movie from. AND, there is a full bar, so you can bring in a glass (or a bottle) or wine, a cocktail, beer, whatever. There is also a bowling alley downstairs for pre- or post-movie gaming.

They only show one movie at a time, usually the latest blockbuster. But they also have a special viewing on Friday and Saturday nights at midnight. They have drink specials from 11-2 and show old movies. This weekend's guilty pleasure? Goonies. I am a little embarrassed to admit that that is WAY too late for me to stay up on Friday. Saturday I am usually done by the time Jason and I go out to dinner somewhere. Yes, people, I'm lame. So, I haven't actually been to the midnight viewings, but have enjoyed many a film at the Moolah. You can find their "coming soon" list here.

Here is a photo of the exterior:

And one of the theater itself:

Thursday, June 19, 2008

Some Stray Rescue Odds and Ends

I promised a happy post after the last two downers. Not only is this happy, it's happy and is dog-related! If you're new to the blog (and you might be because I've had a huge spike in traffic the last few days), Jason and I volunteer for Stray Rescue, a local organization that rescues, rehabilitates, fosters, and adopts stray dogs. We go every Thursday night and walk the doggies that can be walked and sit outside in the yard and play with the doggies that aren't ready for leashes. We took Barley, one of the shelter dogs, to an adoption event on Saturday. No one was interested in him that day, but it was so much fun for him to spend the day away from the shelter and for us to hang out with him outside on a nice day.

The volunteer experience is more than I could have ever hoped for. I look forward to it every week, wanting to see who went to foster, rent-a-pet, or better yet, who got adopted. I miss the ones that go, but there is always a new one to steal my heart.

Well, there are eight new dogs that have come a long way from home to stay at the Stray Rescue shelter. They are called the "Great 8" back in Washington state, where they were seized a year ago from a dog-fighting ring. When Spokane Animal Control requested that the dogs be euthanized because they are considered unadoptable, the judge denied their request because the dogs were considered evidence for the trial. Enter the Spokane County Regional Animal Protective Services (SCRAPS) and Best Friends Animal Sanctuary, who took the dogs in and have been working with behaviorists for the past year to rehabilitate them.

SCRAPS also took in 22 of Michael Vick's pit bulls, and have their hands full with them. They looked for shelters across the country that might help them rehabilitate the Great 8 when the trial ended (the suspects were convicted and sentenced to eight months each, one month for each dog). They asked Stray Rescue and now the Great 8 are literally on their way to St. Louis in the hopes of finding a second chance. They are traveling with two highly experienced individuals: Sherry Woodard, a behaviorist, and Jeff Popowich, the animal care operations manager for Best Friends.

You can read about them here and here. The St. Louis Post Dispatch has a note on their website as well. You can find photos and behavioral information about the dogs here.

I am going to post some of their photos because what'a a post about dogs without dog photos! I'm excited to meet the newcomers:)





Also, Stray Rescue created a new website where you can check out the progess on the new shelter.

Oh, and I know you've been sitting on the edges of your office chairs, anticipating a Lola egg update. She laid her first egg over the weekend. She lays one every other day, so now she's up to three. She sits on them all day long and it's like she's not even there. It's so peaceful:) Except that Jason is too scared of her to clean her cage when it's his turn. What a wimp!