Friday, March 26, 2010

Five months old

Taking Mia's monthly picture was, for the first time, quite difficult. Instead of posing prettily for the camera, she would much rather...

... stare at Chickens.

... slobber on the chair.

... and play with the pillow.

But then I got lucky.

Pretty cool to see how she's grown since month one.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Oh, yeah! The baby!

It has been brought to my attention that the Chickenbone Jones blog might be a WEE bit heavy on the dog-poop talk and not enough adorable baby girl.

Point taken. Let's catch up on Mia.

Affectionately known around the house as "The Little Meesters," she is very close to celebrating the five-month mark. Her favorite things include: Sticking her tongue out. Staring at Chickens. Sucking on the legs of Sophie the giraffe. Loudly babbling things like "BAAAAAA. BABABA. OOOOOOOOOO. BAA."

Recent new skills include: Rolling over front to back. Holding her bottle on her own. Throwing things violently onto the floor. (That one we learned with newspapers - at least she started with daddy's livelihood!)

She has settled on a favorite baseball team.

She loves to stare at herself in the mirror.

And there's nobody on earth she adores more than her dad. (I'm pretty sure the feeling is mutual.)

Let's wrap up with a movie! Starring Mia and her favorite pastime of all. I would edit this down a bit except I don't know how. But come on, can't you suffer two and a half minutes of pure, Grade-A, giggly Meester cuteness? With a little dash of Chicken?

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Guess this one's for the blooper reel

When I started recording this, I merely wanted to show you how well Chickens gets around these days. But you! You're in for much, much more!

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Life is looking up

So I just spent the past 20 minutes chasing Chickens as he ran in circles around the living floor and under the bed.

Yes, ran.

It's wobbly, and there are plenty of stumbles, especially when he gets to the hardwood floor. But it is an unmistakable run, complete with a curly-tail wag and a big old Chickenbone grin.

Unfortunately, I have no such positive news on the bathroom front. In fact, I just got done expressing his bladder in the back yard (where, I might point out, he did more gleeful circle-runs beneath the big peppercorn tree). Do you realize we have been helping this dog go pee five times per day for four months? FOUR. Friends, that is a LOT of canine-bladder-squeezing. The pooping situation also remains the same. In fact, the day after my post about the housekeeping, a girlfriend and her 2-year-old daughter stopped by for a visit. Again, Chickens got so excited that he pooped. Again, nobody saw it. Again, my guest accidentally stepped in it, smooshing poop all over her pretty shoe and leaving me completely mortified. (On the plus side, you can totally tell who your friends are by how gracious they are when your home is a minefield of dog crap.)

But overall, I'd say we are adjusting. And it's moments like right now, with Chickens contentedly sitting in my lap as I write this (and Mia dozing in her swing, in my freshly cleaned house) that I just can't believe how far we've come. I mean, remember when I was going to pieces over having to "tail-walk" Chickens everywhere he went? While also holding my wiggly infant? And remember how he'd drive me crazy by barking at me to put him on the couch when I was feeding Mia? And this isn't even going back to the REAL dark days of Chickens with a giant gash down his back, weeping in his cage for hours on end. Of packing our newborn into the car in the middle of the cold winter night to drive to the animal hospital, again. Of Chickens refusing to eat because he was in too much pain, which also meant he wouldn't eat treats filled with medication, so Sal had to wrestle him down and shove food down his throat. Of his lifeless legs that never, ever moved. Man, those were some hopeless days. How far we have come!

Chickens is such a happy dog now. He has recently been discovered by his sister, who stares at him intently and reaches out to clutch his fur. He returns the affection by trying to jam his tongue down her throat as far as possible. The other day I thought he was being a little rough with her, so I reached over and gently batted him back a bit, but Mia just cracked up laughing. Those two are pretty adorable together.

Yes, it's a pain in the ass to do the bladder thing. And to pick up the poop. But you guys, we are pretty much down to these two issues. Out of all those countless problems and endless days and nights of worry and frustration and sadness, we're down to TWO problems. Uh, I'M PRETTY SURE WE CAN HANDLE IT. And that's the big difference between now and then. Now I know our little family can definitely handle it.

And if he never pees or poops right again? Well, we'll just have to focus on the good stuff.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Um ... welcome?

This afternoon I noticed my neighbor's housekeeping service at work across the street, and I popped over to ask if they'd come over and give me a quote. Housekeeping is something I have been dreaming of for months. While I truly love cleaning my sinks, scrubbing my floors and making my home spic and span all by myself (seriously), it might not surprise you to learn that deep cleaning in this house has become a thing of the past. We do OK on day-to-day maintenance, but this weekend when I used one precious hour of a Mia nap to mop the kitchen floor, I realized it hadn't been mopped since, oh, maybe when I was seven or eight months pregnant. That's just sick.

I held Chickens in my arms while I waited for them, since Mia was sleeping and I didn't want him to run to the door and bark when they arrived. A little while later, the owner of the company and his sister walked over. They came in and looked around, and then we all stood in the living room as he explained their services and pricing. Well, Mia woke up and immediately began to wail, so I put Chickens on the floor and went to her room to get her out of the swing. When I walked back into the living room, to my complete horror, I saw Chickens stumbling around in a circle around our guests, with that familiar plop, plop-plop of poops falling out of his butt.

"HE'S POOPING! HE'S POOPING!" I yelped as I lunged toward them, so startling the nice housekeeping man that he took a step backward and planted his foot right onto a piece of poop.

Which he did not notice.

"YOU'RE STEPPING IN IT!" yelled the crazy red-faced lady with the crying baby and the crapping dog. "OH GOD! YOU STEPPED IN IT!"

Dude calmly opens up the screen door, kicks off his shoe, and then continues to describe all the wonderful things they will do to make my house sparkly clean. Completely ignoring the fact that he was surrounded by a circle of poop. But I was just so embarrassed. I kept trying to explain about the spinal injury and the surgery and the paralysis and how he can't poop right because he can't go on real walks yet, and he finally stopped me and kindly explained that he has lots of animals at home, including two cats, a bird, a pit bull, and a doberman who recently had surgery to remove a corn cob from its stomach. And then he smiled and said, "You know, I have a friend from India who says that when a person takes care of an animal, they have many good things coming to them."

So, yeah, they're pretty much hired.