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This week I missed the photo contest but they have a “For Fun” Pet Photo Entry.  Lucky for me, I have a plethra of pet photos… in fact, it’s hard to choose one.  But alas, I must. 


This was from late spring/early summer.  She loved to play in the water from the hose (still does).  But being a baby, she’d poop out after awhile and go find a warm spot in the sun for a nap. 

Go check their website for more great pet photosbutton_-_photochallenge1

Our sweet 11 month old boxer, Lucy, got her first taste of hunting the other night.  I heard her barking playfully outside and making a big commotion so I went out to investigate.  She’d caught a baby possum. 

Everybody join me in my “BLEH!!”

It wasn’t a tiny baby, more like an adolescent.  Big enough to be out on his own and making his own trouble.  Since Lucy’s an adolescent of sorts herself, Hubby had to “assist” in the kill.  It was damaged pretty banged up from Lucy’s playing.  Rest assured, no matter how ugly you may be of an animal, no matter how closely you resemble something spewed forth from the pit of hell, and no matter how grossed out we get at the sight of you, at the Runningamuck home,  we still won’t leave you to suffer. 

We’re regular animal heros, aren’t we?!

Seriously though, let’s do a little comparison here:

Possum from Australia:



Possum from America:


Once again:




And America:


I think the fact that I couldn’t even find a picture online ANYWHERE of the American Possum with a child even remotely near it is pretty telling.

Why can’t we have the cute one?!  Hubby has a hilarious story about a possum that was run over on our college campus when he worked public safety.  It lived even though half of his face was scraped off and bone was showing.  Hilarious because students would catch him in their headlights while he crossed the road every now and then and he would greet them with the typical “Raarrrrrr” face that the possums in the pictures above are showing.  Needless to say, Hubby got lots of calls about the phantom possum that stalked the college campus. 

I’m just hoping Lucy keeps them OUT of our yard instead of letting them in for a play date.

Double “BLEH!!”

No, I’m not going to “hound” you (get it?! Man I crack myself up!) with disgusting tales regarding the making hot dogs, don’t worry.  I love hot dogs too much to get within 10 feet of a tv program or youtube link that divulges that information.  I’d rather keep my blinders on and continue chowing down on ’em, thank you very much. 

No, this is a little ol story about real dogs… in heat.  Oh yes, I’m going THERE!  I think a topic like this is pretty darn close to writing about your own female cycles so I shall try to type delicately so as not to offend any male readers… I just have to vent a bit.

Lucy, our just-turned-9-months-old Boxer, is in the throws of her first cycle.  Bed Buddies 3 emailNow before you all jump on the Spay/Neuter Bandwagon, I’m already on it.   There’s a couple reasons why we just haven’t had it done yet.  First off, I had no idea she’d start so early.  Seriously, an 8 month old puppy being a mama?!  Yikes!  Second of all, I had read a theory that if you wait until after the puppy’s first cycle before spaying them, they tend to settle down and mature faster.  While I was contemplating trying this method out, Hubby and I hadn’t actually come to a decision yet. 

So Lucy made it for us. 

Did you know that dogs are in heat for almost a MONTH??!!!  I think if I’d been aware of that fact earlier, I’d have been waiting on the vet’s doorstep the very next morning with Lucy in my lap, begging for him to squeeze her in that very day. 

Another not-so-fun fact: Dogs in heat are messy.  Did you know that?  Pet shops sell these funky diaper strap-on thingies for this very issue.  Think about that though for just a minute.  Seriously, who wants to change one of those?!  That’s just as bad as having to hose down the patio every evening.  That was the option I chose by the way…. hosing down the patio on a daily basis.  Course, it probably wasn’t the cheaper choice.  Given our current drought issues, the water was probably just as expensive as the Doggie-Rag-Pads.  Oops!  Sorry. That wasn’t very delicate at all, was it?! 

Go to fullsize imageThankfully, we don’t have a lot of strays in our neighborhood.  In fact, the only ones I see are usually neutered neighborhood escapees.  So I wasn’t too worried about Lucy finding a Baby Daddy… That is, until a lovely friend of mine pointed out the fact that coyotes roam the area on occasion (usually when their food becomes scare and they decide the neighborhood kitties would make a nice snack) and oh, how funky-looking of a litter would Lucy have with a coyote!!  … and then she laughed.

It’s amazing to me how, as soon as one realizes one’s sweet, innocent puppy is in heat and there’s even a remote possibility that a hornymale coyote is nearby, one suddenly begins to doubt the sturdiness of each and every fence board and post that is involved in the perimeter of one’s backyard.  One begins a sunrise/sunset inspection ritual that involves a visual and “wiggle” check of each fence board.  Oh and don’t forget the daily hole digging check too… on both sides of the fence line.  One never knows when said puppy might try to dig her way out in shear desperation or a testosterone-pumped, leather-clad, slick-haired, bad-boy coyote might try to dig his way in.   You know, if the fence happens to hold up against the brute-force attempts.

Needless to say, I’m feeling very OCD lately.  Ever watch “Obsessed” on A&E?  That’s me right now.  I check the gate latch only about 50 bazillion times every day.  Even though 6 months ago Hubby installed a spring hinge on the gate so that it will close itself after he a child has walked through and forgotten to close it.  Nope.  Doesn’t matter.  I still have to check it.  Thankfully I can see the latch from my kitchen window.  Otherwise, I might sweat a few pounds away with those 50 bazillion daily checks in our 100+ degree summer heat.  And we couldn’t have that now, could we?!Tongue email

While the fact that MY dog being in heat is mighty depressing to me.  The stories of other people’s dogs in heat are still pretty funny.  Pioneer Woman’s Innocent-city-girl-exposed-to-the-wilds-of-the-animal-kingdom story is HILARIOUS!  You must go read it.

I’m headed there again just so I can laugh and break up my OCD a little for this hour of the day.

Then I have to go do a perimeter check.

Towel Stealing email

And I might just have some time to blog now!  I’ve missed you… I still go throughout my days thinking I should blog about this or that but somehow 5 bazillion things spring up between me and my computer.  I have time to read other blogs or write on mine and well, you guys are much more interesting than me. 

I’m hoping with the arrival of summer vacation my blogging will get back to “normal”.  Although I’d like to take the time to point out that for the Runningamuck household, school is never really out.  Because if we did, the dream of having 12 year olds taking college classes would have to die.

I’m just teasing folks.  They’ll be 14 at least.  Anything younger than that would be plain ridiculous.

Okay, okay!  So in all seriousness, Hubby and I will be happy for college graduations before their 30… or we’re 80… we can’t be toooo picky after all. lol.

Some exciting things that have kept me busy lately? Besides schooling a 2nd grader, a kindergardener, a preschooler and keeping a 2 year old from getting the puppy in repeated headlocks that is. 

We’re done with diapers!  Can I get an “Amen?” !!  I do the happy dance every time we walk through Target and don’t have to stop in the diaper department.  Yes, my dancing embarrasses my children but their young, they don’t understand the joy I feel and they’ll heal from it.  Or is it what doesn’t kill them will make them stronger?  Hmmm…. 

Our four year old, Tiger, is now an official 2 wheeled bike rider.  Actually, I can’t claim this one kept me busy.  He taught himself… in FOUR days!  I’m thinking if this is how it’s going to be from here on out, I need to prepare myself.  And start tucking extra money away for medical bills and all kinds of sports equipment… both the norm and the extreme. 

The PUPPY!   Lucy has single-handedly destroyed every thing in our backyard.  Let’s just say she loves her grown-up teeth.  She’s been soooo good, trains easily and is very well behaved around people… it’s just the plants, flowers (she particularly enjoyed my snapdragons), weeds, wood, plastic toys, bikes pedals, sticks, flip flops, newspapers, sunglasses, sprinkler heads, etc. that have to fear her.  I’m so ready for this stage to be over…

I’ve officially become a bake-a-holic.  I knew I enjoyed being in the kitchen before but I’ve become a maniac the past couple months.  I have to find “takers” now before I cook/bake so that it doesn’t sit in my house and get devoured by Hubby and I.  My goal is to take more pics and share them and the recipes with you all. 

I’ll end this post with a teaser…

Roasted Potatoes email

Roasted Potatoes… ummm, I’m starting to drool just looking at it.  I just love this recipe!  The dill and other spices just make you want to inhale the whole bowl.   Stay tuned for the recipe….

Actually, it’s the first day of February but I took these pictures yesterday.  Just to clarify. 

It’s the Superbowl today.  Normally, I’d be all over it.  I love any excuse to cook all morning and then sit around, socialize, watch a little foolsball and stuff my face.  But two things have influenced the fact that today I’m doing the exact opposite. 

#1 – Hubby’s working.  It’s just not the same without him around and hollerin’, “Drink Wench!”  I giggle every time.

#2 – Kids are sick.  At least not with the dreaded flu I recently wrote about.  So far we’ve escaped that one.  But we’ve had some nasty colds that just won’t let up.  And in case you don’t have kids and so don’t know this… sick, cranky, whiny kids don’t mix with football, relaxing and socializing.  You’d find yourself very quickly either in a back bedroom trying to keep from going insane while everyone else watches your tv OR you’d be hitting the road within the first hour, heading back home with your snotty-nosed crabbies. 

So here I type.  Thinking of you, my bloggy-friends, instead of cheering at the tv and stuffing my face.  Well, I’m actually still stuffing my face, I’m just doing it in private so it doesn’t require napkins.  I might have to call the dog in to clean me up before I get up off the couch so I don’t make a mess of the floor as well as myself. 

This past week I’ve felt a tad guilty.  Why, you ask?  Well, a lot of people have been suffering through some nasty ice storms, trying to stay warm without the help of electricity and setting up camp within the walls of their homes.  I’ve been blessed not to have this worry.  But my guilt comes in to play because I have the opposite type of weather and the fact I’ve been boo-hooing that I’ve gotten to wear a sweater this winter only a handful of times.  We’ve been suffering through 70+ temps.  Believe me, after seeing all your pics of icy trees and yards full frozen mess, I use the term “suffering” extremely loosely! 

So yesterday I decided to actually appreciate my weather and quite moaning about my lack of winter.  So we may be water-rationing in a few months… pshaw!  Rationing – smashioning.   Having a brown lawn is so easy to maintain.  Brown’s the new green, right?

**We interrupt this completely random and blabbering post to inform you that Kurt Warner has 7 children.  Did you know that??  I sure didn’t.  I’m impressed by that.  That and the fact that he shaved his stubble for his wife today.  Nothing says love like a clean shaven face.  Similar to loving your hubby enough to shave your legs even when no one else would ever know that you could braid your leg hair. **  

 Here are some pictures from our last day of January 09.  We spent it playing with the garden hose. 

Lucy and Lil Blue enjoying the hose together:


It didn’t take long for Lil Blue to shed his wet clothes and sport just his diaper.  Look at that pasty white skin!p1018831email



 Hmmm, I can almost smell the wet dog from here!!p1018848email

 Water play tuckers a puppy out:p1018852email

 Her puppy sleep was interrupted by an almost naked, pasty-white 2 year old who insisted on planting a wet one on her snout.  Here he is getting lined up for an accurately planted smooch:p1018856cropemail

 Moooving in… Lucy still has no idea, that girl can sleep through almost anythingp1018857cropemail 

 Oooohhhh! Her eyes are open now.  I’m sure it was a dream come true.  p1018858cropemail

Did this help defrost some of you?  I hope so.  If not, post some of your frozen tundra pictures and help me cool off.  Maybe we can find a happy medium.

As you can tell, my “thought-mare” didn’t come true.  Phew!  What a relief! 

But my brain is so overwhelmed I can’t even do a recap.  Or at least one that makes any sense what so ever and isn’t just me rambling on and on all the while just trying to sort things out… out loud. 

Oh wait.  That’s what all my posts are like! 

Silly me.

Really though, I’m just going to let everyone else try to sort this one out for me.  I think my brain is plain out of shape after 8 long months of LOST-lessness.   I guess I have to warm up to the high brain activity LOST requires. 

Man, is Hubby going to enjoy that sentence.

Point is, this week, I’m reading all YOUR recaps for insight into the delightful chaos those two hours wracked on my poor, slow, out-of-shape brain.

I had a bit of a distraction too.  Lucy was feeling a tad neglected in the light of LOST so I ended up fighting this off all night:


And this:


(She’s in mid-bounce here and that would be a cow hoof in her mouth.  Please don’t ask me to explain it.  For some reason she likes chewing on it and I’m desperate for her to chew on anything that isn’t human… or on a human… or near a human…)

As a little more proof of the abuse my hands were subject to for the first whole hour of LOST, I present:

 Exhibit A: The Fanglost-companion-4

Just when I was ready to toss her outside on her ear because I was having to listento LOST more than watch LOST and because she was running around like a rabid bat outta hell and had knawed my hands down to bloody stumps… she, well, she pooped out:


Somehow the bloody stumps don’t seem so bad when she looks like this.  Look at her bottom lip.  It cracks me up. 

LOST does too – crack me up that is.  Like Hurley’s comment to Sayid,  “Maybe if you would eat more comfort food, you wouldn’t need to go around shooting people.” 

LOST also perplexes me and makes my head hurt. 

So I’m off to read some brilliant recaps because mine is not.

I don’t know about you, but I’m tired.  Is that really a good way to start the new year?  Bleary-eyed, groggy, day-long bed-head… sucking off a coffee pot all day.  I mean, I love hanging out with friends, grazing for 7 hours straight, playing games and chatting up a storm (after the kids have been bedded down) but when I have to be up at 6am New Years Day, I start to seriously consider swearing off all New Year’s Eves as my new year resolution. 

I’m starting to feel a little better though, after my 8th cup of coffee and 3rd helping of Monkey Bread.  Man that stuff is addicting.  And that’s why we restrict it to New Year’s Day breakfasts only.  It’s a treat.  It’s a celebration.  It’s special.  And it’s also the reason why I have to get up at 6am the first day of every year instead of snoozing in until 7.   It’s worth it.  I don’t feel that way at 6am but by 7am, when I’m stuffing my face with Monkey Bread, I’m singing the praises of alarm clocks and early morning baking. 

Since my brain is going to be fuzzy all day today (despite the gargantuan amounts of coffee I will ingest over the next 12 hours), I’ve decided to finish this post off with puppy pictures.  

I don’t know about you, but when I hear “New Year”, I think “puppy pictures”.  Doesn’t everybody? 

Besides, she sooo cute.

One glance into her big baby eyes will clear the cloud of sleepy gloom from around your noggin’.


In the interest of keeping her cuteness and adorability intact, I will refrain from sharing the scene that greeted me last night when I ran home to check on her and let her out mid-way through our all-night revelries.   Let me just say, I wanted to shower when I was done.  And I would have, had there not been Guitar Hero Band going on in my absence at the party.  That stuff is good… blackmail good. 


This is Lucy’s sleepy look.  She tries real hard to keep those peepers open but gravity wins.


Her first chore, as a new member of the Runningamuck family, is to keep the windows clean.  And that’s no easy task let me tell you.  I was happy to finally be able to pass off the responsibility.  A girl has to lick ’em all down at least 3 times a day to keep up.  And Lucy is proving herself very capable.


But all that licking wears her out.   This is how she lets me know her saliva’s all dried up and she won’t work under these conditions. 


And then Lil Blue decides he won’t work under those conditions either and they both lay down on the job.  Then the grime piles up, the dishes don’t get done, the laundry sits, wrinkling, in the dryer, and the grass grows 10 feet tall outside.  Just kidding, we have gardeners to mow for us.  Lil Blue doesn’t edge very well.

See?!  Don’t you feel a little less, tired?  

I do.

At least until I have to take Lucy outside to potty again.   

I’m here to testify that she has the teeniest bladder on the face of the planet. 

Course, after all this coffee, I may be needing to go just as frequently as she does.  So I guess I’d better stop pointing fingers at her and start worrying about my own bladder.

Happy New Year!!

The Runningamuck household has grown by one since yesterday. 


Isn’t she adorable?  This is Lucy Bear.  She’s an 8 week old Boxer and she has such a good temperament.  She loves the kids, despite their overwhelming and exuberant attention.  Last night (her first night) was better than I expected.  She cried some each time I had to close her door but only for a few minutes.  Then she’d settle herself down and go to sleep.   She plays hard and then crashes hard!  That girl can sleep through anything! lol  

(Pardon the bad pictures, I took them before I had my coffee and the moving subjects didn’t help… my brain was moving several seconds slower than they were!)

lucy-2-email  lucy-4-email

We’re totally and completely smitten.  Well, all but Hubby.  And he really is too… he’s just questioning his rush to action yesterday when he saw her litter for sale on the way home from dirt-biking.  Our wonderful friend who was with him “encouraged” him to bite the bullet  err, make the purchase. 

I can’t promise the next few days won’t be filled with puppy/children pictures.  I’ll fight it, I promise but I’m weak you guys.  WEAK!  I won’t even admit how many pictures I’ve taken today since I’ve had my coffee. 

It’s like having a new baby!  I’m tellin’ ya, people come by to visit and meet her… everyone wants to hold her… people send congratulating notes…  

I do have to admit though, there haven’t been any gifts.  And we don’t have pacifiers and burp rags strewn all over the house.  We also don’t have a wipe/diaper stash in every corner of the house just in case.  No bassinet in our bedroom (although I’m sure Lucy wouldn’t have complained at all) and I can sit with no tenderness what-so-ever.  My chest isn’t leaking like a sieve and my clothes still somewhat fit.

Although, I do have to admit, having a new baby to blame the old bowl-of-jelly-belly on would be a nice… but no, I can only blame my flabby gut on my Christmas over-indulgence. Darn!

Welcome Lucy Bear!!  You have some mighty big paw-prints to fill but I think you are gonna do just fine…  (I can hear the farmer from the movie Babe saying, “That’ll do Pig, that’ll do”. )


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