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For the last couple of weeks, we’ve noticed the puppy locking himself in the bathroom on purpose. Sometimes, he can do it accidentally if something he wants is wrapped around or under the door and in the process of trying to get it out, the door gets swung shut. But lately we’ve noticed that he’s been deliberately shutting the door on purpose, leaving him he locked in the bathroom.

After some time exchanging puzzled looks, we’ve been investigating what he’s been doing – he knows how to open a door by jumping on it if he’s on the right side of it, and we thought maybe he was doing that by accident on doors that swing in. But thenĀ  I started clearing all the space around the door, making sure there was nothing at all behind it and pushing it completely open. There should be no reason he would want to be behind it or to accidentally swing the door closed.

Which is about the time we realised that he was deliberately closing the door for the reason of closing it – well actually, we think he’s conducting experiments to teach himself how to open the door when it’s fully shut. We’ve caught him swinging the door gently shut and then trying to maneouver it with his mouth to open it. It’s a swing door with a doorknob, not a sliding door so he won’t actually succeed but watching him conduct experiments and checking replication, is really very cute.

We have our very own scientist in the house!



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We’re looking after my parents’ dog, Morrie, at the moment. He’s quite old, not interested in making new friends, yet despite this, unbelievably patient with the puppy who does not take no for an answer. It took a good few days for Morrie to settle in. He kept looking like he thought Sasha had cooties. But yesterday, for some reason, he seemed to really settle in. He started patrolling the perimeter and sitting guard at the front door, in turns. This mesmerised Sasha who went from constantly antagonising Morrie to sitting in choice viewing spots and watching Morrie get hot under the collar. Now they are both tiring each other out and napping and not annoying us, more importantly.

Anyway, I just noticed that Morrie puts himself to bed and then doesn’t get up for anything. Puppies on the other hand, are always up for any old caper and will happily wake up and wander down the other end of the house with you, no matter the hour. On noticing this, I remarked to C: We should get another puppy when Sasha starts to get old.

C: I’m planning on doing that with you, too.

Me: *unimpressed look*

C: Yeah, isn’t the old one supposed to train the new one?

Me: You really want *me* training your next wife?

C: maybe I’ll pay someone.

So now I am sitting in bed, nursing a very painful spicy food incident and contemplating my holiday that was, as the prospect of hours to returning to the day job tomorrow approaches. Holidays are no way long enough and I really really wish I didn’t have to go to work yet. I only have 8 days left in this job to go. I of course got nowhere near what I had hoped to get done done. And I’m getting more and more scared about the longer commute that I have signed up for with my new job. I’m consoling myself on the first with the fact that the holidays have kickstarted my getting round to a bunch of things which I can continue to work on, in shorter spurts, as of tomorrow.

  • I got started on sorting out and clearing out the two spare rooms which have some of the last, and worst, of my unpacking. You know, all the stuff that you don’t know what it is or what’s with it so you don’t unpack it cause you’d have to sort it out.
  • I also sorted and tossed yet more of the postgrad stuff.
  • I homed a few more of my pictures on various walls.
  • I started some low effort gardening (mostly setting the habit of watering things)
  • I watched about 50 hours of The Vampire Diaries. Ahem
  • Also watched bits of Homeland, Psych, Primeval, The New Girl, Whitney, The Big Bang Theory, Private Practice
  • Sorted out my quilting – did about half of my xmas presents (the rest still to go), discovered I had one quilt top finished and located backing and wadding for the finishing of the project (that’s as far as that got), almost finished the third quarter of the monochrome quilt, made up almost 50 of the charm hexagons for my charm quilt (and discovered I have many many triangles precut for this project).
  • Read several books
  • Bought a ipad
  • Started my 2012 Last Short Story Reading
  • Participated in the Mega Boxing Day Podcast
  • Worked on three different Twelve Planets collections
  • Worked on a couple of unannounced TPP projects
  • Found a couple of comics that I’m dabbling in
  • Opened and started processing TPP’s novel manuscript submissions call

Ok, after that list, I guess I did ok with my holiday. I felt really like I had nothing left to give to the year and spent a lot just “pottering about the house” which is one of my favourite things to do when I’m on downtime. So I have to be happy with that. Even though a lot of things didn’t get progressed as far as I’d like.

But I did get a bit of insight into how I operate – know thine enemy – in terms of procrastination. I figure if I can figure out why I don’t do things I really want to, maybe I can figure out a way around my own obstacles. Or something. Don’t read that too closely, it’ll give you a headache. I often figure up tricks to get myself to do things I don’t want to. And whilst, the making myself do things I don’t want to do is more a thing of the past, making myself do things I want to do is kinda new and still shiny. Anyway, what I discovered is I often abandon or avoid things when they require going to find something out, or figuring out how to do something, or if left fallow too long, not knowing where I was up to or what I was doing.

So the whole sorting out my craft cupboard involved grouping like with like ie all parts of each project in one place and then taking stock to see where each was up to. And that alone was enough to get my enthusiasm back for about 6 projects at once. Often just identifying what the next step is (something C is often saying to me) was enough to help me move forward. It meant that instead of starting a bunch of new projects which had been my plan, I ended up happily working on older ones. I took this and applied it to other things, like sorting out scary packing boxes of doom, and emails that were waiting for answers, and TPP projects I’d stalled on, and found great success. It seems so simple but I think I need the reminder – when looking at something I’m avoiding, think up what just the next step is. Maybe that should be my thing for this year.



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August 21   I hate packing

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I really really hate packing. And I’m still procrastinating on it now at nearly 8pm. I’m off for 3 days in the field for work. Most of the work team will be there. It will be 10 hour days of field work, then probably 2 hours at night before bed and repeat. Packing should not be this big a deal! And yet, I’m always thinking how much I could do in my leisure time since I will have some! I keep thinking I’ll pack this book and then a second and then some knitting and my laptop to do editing and and and. When truthfully, I think one book, one pair of socks to knit (2.5hour car drive to the site and back). And that is really probably all I will have time for. I am still thinking I should take my laptop – I have much needed editing to get to. And you never know. It could bucket down one day and they cancel the work. Ooh maybe I should take 2 books then?

All I want to do is watch Doctor Who (yeah yeah I know) and continue working on this shawl I’m making (the drama of which I will save for another post).

Anyway. The long and short of it is that I will be offline (I KNOW) til Wednesday night – no phone, no internet where we’re going. I’m going to struggle with that, for sure. I’ve queued up some posts cause I was chatty this weekend so likely you’ll not even notice I’m gone.

This is a fantastic shot of the puppy this afternoon whilst I was manically tweeting the Hugos – I had Tweetdeck and email on my laptop, the ceremony (eventually) streaming through my iphone sitting just in front of it and I was working on my knitting. Pups pulled up the back end by napping through the whole thing. Poor thing. Not sure this weather agrees with him.



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Today my parents visited to finally see where I live and they brought their dog to meet the puppy. Their dog is old and grumpy and unimpressed when puppies come to stay. Pups is worn out from trying to get the dog to play with him:

 



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June 23   Puppy class

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For the next few episodes we’ve moved the recording night of Galactic Suburbia because we have puppy classes on Wednesday nights.

I love that C is so organised and diligent about such things, because I am not. But he determined that we would do such things as attending puppy school, and we should, I just would not have gotten around to it. But the vet is a 2 minute walk from our house and the classes are 7pm on a Wednesday night so it didn’t seem that bad. We had to wait a few weeks for the next class, which started last night, so Sasha is the oldest puppy there, at 14 weeks. Most of the puppies are 9.5 weeks.

I have to admit to stressing out a little before going. Would I do alright? I hate being judged and made to do things in front of everyone else, and then being corrected etc. I have no idea how I did ballet for so long, given that. But then I realised, the worst thing is we fail the 4 week class. So what?

It turned out to be a hilariously fun time! There are 5 puppies in the class, none the same breed or cross. There’s a mix of people – two women came by themselves. Two more brought a child with them. And C and I went with Sashie. I always thought that mothers’ group sounded like a hideous thing – being forced to have to socialise with people simply for being at the same place at the same time. (I’ve had previous hideous experience – oh look, you’re all wives/girlfriends of guys who have a sport in common, here, sit together for two hours, you’ll get along. Yeah, I mostly don’t have things in common with random people I am thrust with.) BUT! Now I get the whole mother’s group thing – going through the same experience at about the same time is enough. It was such a relief to find 4 other people who knew exactly what it’s like to have a puppy, right now, today. We’re all wanting to be able to get out of the classes the same thing. And two of the owners had lost dogs at about the time we lost Benji. So, we’re in this together.

The dog trainer is a vet nurse. And I think she’s really great. She loves dogs. She has trained a lot of puppies. She makes it really clear what and why you are doing things. And how to get a puppy to do things because OMG they have a short … oooh look a butterfly! *pounce* So there’s Sasha. And then a border collie called Flo, Gizmo the chihuahua shihtzu cross, Ruby the Australia bulldog and Violet the cavoodle.

The best thing I have learned so far is (and its so obvious and you know it, yet mostly you don’t practice it) – better to give praise at the action you want than vague yelling at the behaviour you don’t. Already today, I’ve had several instances where getting the puppy to perform things like answer to his name, has positively gotten him to stop doing things like eating the laptop cable, when repeated yelling and growling and so on for 4 weeks has failed, or succeeded in making it all into a fun game.

The puppies are gorgeous. We learned how to answer to our name, how to sit, how to come, and to look into our eyes. Then the puppies were all asleep after the first 20 minutes. Gosh it’s exhausting being a puppy! Ours embarrassingly did not like one of the treats we were given for the rewards – he kept spitting it out! We did a controlled play time as well – certain dogs invited down to see how they’d interact. Four of the pups were not interested, and a little scared. Gizmo was the only one interested in playing, checking anyone out and in fact did not nap at all. I think he’s hilarious! All the other pups were terrified of Gizmo, though Flo was too polite to object to him sniffing her personals – but she did NOT enjoy it. I thought C was going to burst something he was laughing so hard. Ruby was kinda slightly annoyed at being made to be awake for the whole class, or she would have been annoyed if she could be slightly less mellow.

It was really a very funny evening. We were told that the puppies would probably be more into play time next week. I hope so! I didn’t think that Sasha was that shy. He’s a terror at home! As we were all going in for the class, people with late vet appointments were awwing over the cute little puppies. I think all of us sitting there were thinking, “yeah cute now, not so when waking you up at 4.30 am for a toilet break and then wanting playtime.”

 

 

 



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May 22   Newest addition

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Yesterday, we didn’t mean to, we were only looking, but at the end of the day we came home with a 9 week old Moodle called Sasha:

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 



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