Last night a friend of ours came over for dinner and brought his two (2!!!) sweet and friendly Labrador Retrievers. Beau thought it was the best! dinner! party! ever! and not just because Jason fed him some of the chicken. He was just SO happy and excited to have those other dogs here. But now today I can't shake the feeling that my Beau Bear is sad, and misses his new friends. All morning he kept whining and begging to go outside to see if they were out there, somewhere. He seems to realize now that they are not. Maybe it was all just a dream -- a wonderful, waggy-tailed dream. AND YET, DESPITE ALL THIS EVIDENCE THAT BEAU NEEDS A BIG-DOG FRIEND, negotiations with my husband have stalled, because he won't even have them with me. (Although Rey's all, I SEE UR INNERNET HISTORY AND THINK U SHOULD CHILLZ, WOOMAN.) Read more →


CREEPER CAT, PART ONE It's okay, Cat. Just over here eating dinner. Can you stop staring at the back of my head like that, Cat? D'awwwwwww nevermind I like your toes Cat. CREEPER CAT, PART TWO It's okay, Cat. Just in here taking a bath. Okay that's definitely enough please go away Cat. UNIMPRESSED CAT, PART FOUR MILLION AND THREE It must be exhausting to be so loved, ugh. SHOULD I BE CONCERNED ABOUT MY CHILDREN'S ONGOING VERBAL ABUSE OF ALEXA, PART WHO KNOWS CLIMATE CHANGE IS REAL AND HERE TO KILL US ALL, PART HELPLESS SOBBING Us on Tuesday night: "This is so romantic and I love it out here this is the best purchase ever and we should totally come out here every night from now on blah blah blah" vs. Us on Thursday night: "OH MY GOD IT'S COLD WHY AM I SO COLD OH GOD WE TURNED THE HEAT OFF AND KICKED OFF ALL THE BLANKETS AND NOW IT IS 5 A.M. AND I AM A HUDDLED SHIVERING BALL OF FREEZING NO DON'T PUT YOUR FEET ON ME DON'T PUT YOUR FEET ON ME GO TURN ON THE HEAT AND PUT ON SOME SOCKS AND OH... Read more →


We're coming up on the year anniversary of The Worst Week Ever, when we lost both Ceiba and Max in hideous, rapid-fire succession. So it's been interesting that over the past couple weeks I've fielded an unusually high number of emails with questions about the new pets. Specifically, how/when/why-type questions about our decision(s) to adopt them, from readers who are either dealing with a recent loss (or double whammy like ours, I'm so sorry Jen, 21017 can suck it), or are considering adopting themselves and want some honest real-talk about the process. And while answering these emails, I've probably written like, enough words to fill four blog posts about it. So...let's re-purpose some shit! FAPQ #1: How did you know you were ready to adopt a new dog? I dunno. I kind of didn't? The boys brought up the possibility of a new dog almost immediately after we broke the news about Ceiba's cancer to them. Jason was like, "That's a good idea." I was like, "Slow your damn rolls, you monsters, she's not even dead yet." And then I spent the next few days mourning deeply for that dog, the one that wasn't even dead yet. The appointment to... Read more →


So tomorrow we're hosting Friendsgiving (get vacuuming, kids!) and then Ezra's birthday party is on Sunday and I'm all asdlkafjedonfvoenkfv right now so let's just post some pet photos and call it a day. Or half a day. Or half-an-ass day. Whatever. I was all ready to take Mr. Bo Bear here for another professional groom and haircut, then realized that selfishly, I really need him to stay as fluffy as freaking possible right now. (I mean, look at that ridiculous face. Don't you feel better already?) So I gave him a bath at home, trimmed up his nails and all the fur around his snout, eyes and paws that seemed to be bothering him. This is at least slightly blog-notable because after we adopted him, he was very defensive about his mouth and paws. I once tried brushing/trimming a small tangle on his snout and he snapped at me (then immediately felt TERRIBLE and curled up on my lap crying and wagging his tail, all DON'T SEND ME AWAY I DON'T KNOW WHY I'M LIKE THIS), and I've never tried again since. Same with holding his paws or otherwise restraining him long enough to trim his nails. This time... Read more →


Wow, I just realized how completely overboard I've been going lately with the CATS CATS CATS stories and photos. It's like, are the kids still around? Has anyone checked on the kids? Yep, still around. And clearly very busy. (He actually seems genuinely fine with this.) Noah is just days away from his 11th birthday, Fellow Olds. And while he still hasn't voiced any displeasure/resistance to making appearances here, it's rare these days to have anything really significant to report about him. Current life goals involve learning to program so he can get a job at Minecraft and make enough money to buy a Delorean, then quit the Minecraft gig and be a full-time professional time traveler. He'd be happy to tell you his theories on time travel, if you have approximately 17 free hours. Also I spaced out this morning and poured milk in his cereal, which was the single worst thing I have EVER done to him, especially since it was the LAST BOWL OF CEREAL. He ate maybe three mournful bites and then made himself some rage-toast out of spite. Mark this date down and Never Forget. Noah clearly will not. (I just got up to pee... Read more →


A few weeks ago, Beau learned how to open the back sliding screen doors with his paw. Or more accurately, with his toenails, which flash forward to today, has resulted in the screens looking like so: Awesome. He's such a smart dog!! Also SO MANY STINKBUGS INSIDE NOW. Before the damage got this bad, however, the main problem with Beau's new skill was that he'd let himself outside and then come back inside before I realized that he'd even done it, leaving the screen door wide open for God knows how long while I tapped merrily away on my laptop in a room far, far away. So that's how Rey got out of the house a few days ago. (Not to be confused with falling out of the house.) I realized the door was open, and then Finn started howling his alarms that he couldn't find her/Dumb Baby Did a Dumb Thing Again, Human Person. I crept outside the basement door and sure enough, there was a small black lump on the far, far side of our yard, and two bright yellow-green eyes peering at me. Inscrutable as ever, I had no idea if she was terrified or basically baiting... Read more →


It's been a week, you know? Good time for some cats. Oh look another cat. Hi, other cat. Nothing but cats. Okay, cat and one dog. Okay, dog and other cat. Okay, two kids, too. And that's all I've got. We're off to the beach for a bit and I've barely started packing, unless you count the kids' suitcase that I never unpacked after their week with the grandparents. That's good to go, because FORESIGHT. And EPIC LAZINESS. Which I always knew would pay off at some point, in one small way or another. Read more →


I had a weird dream last night -- not VERY weird, as my weirdest weird-ass dreams go, but still -- where I looked out my front door to discover that one of our garage doors was sitting at the far end of the driveway, banged up to hell. I ran outside and a crowd of neighbors had already gathered, explaining that this sort of thing "happens all the time," thanks to a crazy woman in the neighborhood who likes to pull into empty, open garage door bays in hopes of sneaking into houses and wandering around.* Sometimes, they said, she'll close the garage behind her to hide her car, then back out in a panic before you catch her, destroying the door in the process. "You should keep your garage doors closed," they said. "So I should call the police," I said. "Nah," they said. "It happens all the time. What's the point?" Then I noticed a crew was already working on repairs -- an oddly oversized crew I had not called or hired, veering things into Money Pit-fueled anxiety dream territory -- but who assured me I didn't need a rate quote or anything because they "had the best... Read more →


In the weeks after adopting Beau, I became super-hyper-conscious of how many damn exit points there are in our new(ish?) house. Our old house had two doors and one gate, and you could stand in a single spot in the foyer and get the open/close status on all three at once. Now there are five different doors that lead to the outside, spread across three different levels. Three doors lead to the backyard, where there are then two different gates that could possibly be open, on complete opposite sides of the yard. One doors to the garage, where there are two more doors to worry about, especially since one of our neighbor's garage remotes accidentally opens ours by some weird cross-signal coding glitch. The front door has a storm door back-up, but that's useless unless it's locked because Beau quickly figured out he could push it open with his front legs and bolt to freedom, terrible freedom. For awhile there, our house felt more like some algebraic danger map of escape routes and combinations -- check that door, then the door after that, run from window to window to confirm gates are latched, solve for X, divide by π, multiply... Read more →


Happy belated Fourth of July! We decided to try something a little different this year -- a picnic and symphony orchestra concert at a local park, followed by fireworks. Kids were SUPER into it. Clearly. (Weary sigh.) I figured there'd be SOME downtime where the kids might need some please-stop-wandering-and-stay-on-the-blanket tethering entertainment, but unfortunately they powered through all the sandwiches and snacks and an entire case of juice pouches within the first 30 minutes. And we still had about three and a half hours to go before fireworks. There was a Star Wars melody at some point (aka the point during which I was stuck in an obscenely long bathroom line) and Jason reported that they did in fact look up from the warm glowy glowboxes and deem it "cool." Then they all asked if we could watch the fireworks from the parking lot instead, because they always sit on top of the car for fireworks. What's this picnic blanket shit? Why were we messing with tradition? In the end, it was a great fireworks show and everybody enjoyed it. (The hour-and-a-half wait to get out of the parking lot, however, not so much. Probably should've listened to the kids... Read more →