Thursday, February 9, 2012

Living with a Puppy means...

Life with Rex is like living in a perpetual revolving door.

Each day revolves around the following activities:

Standing outside waiting for puppy to go potty countless times a day and in all kinds of weather!

Having to step over dog squeaky toys, chew toys, bones and other puppy paraphernalia.

Lots of play, (remember all that puppy paraphernalia)

intermixed with a little sleep here and there,

And the occasional bath.

No wonder I feel a little dizzy and like I'm not getting anything accomplished.

All I can say is it's just a good thing he's so cute!

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

It's Up to Me

I am grateful for the lessons even a puppy can teach me.

We are in the middle of crate training at night.  T-Rex is not yet sleeping through the night consistently, and, honestly, it is getting old.  I feel like I have a new baby again and I am too old for the sleep deprivation that brings!

Last night he was up at 1:06 am (yes, I remember the exact moment!).  We first thought we could tough it out, ha!  He had a Urinary Tract Infection a couple of weeks ago and I was wondering if that was back, so Dave (thank you!) got up and took him outside.  Rex went back to his crate

I didn't hear from him again until 6:12 am.  After I took him outside since it was still so dark and cold I decided I wanted to crawl back under my covers.  So, I put Rex back to bed.  He was not happy about that, but I was determined to exercise some tough, I'll-show-you-who's-in-charge, kind of love.  I knew all his needs had been met and he just wanted to play.  I stayed in my bed and listened as he complained loudly, hoping to capture anyone's attention.   He protested off and on (mostly on) for over an hour before I finally got into the shower so I didn't have to hear him anymore.

While I was lying in bed trying to ignore his complaints I was reminded of a valuable principle - We do not have control over another's actions, only over our responses.   I could not control Rex's complaining (getting him out of the crate was not an option) but I was able to control how I responded to his incessant barking and howling!  I was not happy about his actions, but I did not allow my emotions to be taken hostage by a little puppy!  What could have been an incredibly bad start to a day (I know, because it has happened before!) was instead an empowering lesson on the capacity I really do have to control my thoughts and thereby my emotions, actions and results -  even when the world around me is bidding me do otherwise.

For all you animal rights activists that might be reading this:
Rex was totally fine when I finally released him from his crate!
Oh, and I do plan on contacting the vet to get her take on whether that UTI could be acting up again.

Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Ch-ch-ch-ch-Changes for 2012

A few changes have come into my life already this new year.

Change #1
I returned home after working full time for the past  5 1/2 years at a local Charter School. It was a good experience, a good environment and I worked with some great people, but it was time to move on.  I needed more time to dedicate to my Foot Zoning as I look to graduate from my program early this summer.  Dave and I decided the new year was a good time to make the break and focus on this path I have been placed on.  I was anxious to finally have some time to myself to re-group and "breathe".

All this started to become a little more complicated when my son, Travis, introduced me to Change #2:

Travis with T-Rex the Goldendoodle

He had gone with my other son and his wife to look at puppies so Cait could have a companion while Justin is deployed this year.

Justin and Cait
They found their sweet puppy Sloane that day.

Cait holding Sloane

While they were looking at puppies, T-Rex climbed up into Travis' lap and as they say, the rest is history.  Of course, he was encouraged to bring the puppy home by his younger sister, Laura, who promised to help take care of it!  Yeah, right!

Change #3:
I now have two sons deployed with the National Guard.  Travis left January 16, 2012.

Heading out for a 14 month deployment
"Wait," you ask,  "I thought he brought a puppy home just a couple of weeks earlier, didn't he know he was deploying?"  Oh yes, my dear friends, those are some very good questions which may be the topic of another post another day.  Which brings us to the biggest, most life-changing and unforeseen change of all...

Change #4...  I am now the foster parent of an 11-week old goldendoodle puppy named T-Rex.

There is no doubt about it, T-Rex is an adorable, very smart and basically very good puppy.

He is snuggly and soft and makes cute puppy noises and he is playful and tries so very hard to please.

However, he is still very much a PUPPY and it has been a HUGE adjustment.  It is like suddenly having a new baby in the house and I am wiped out.

The title of this blog, Going Cuckoo,  is so fitting now!  There are times I feel like that's what's happening!  I hope to keep the blog up-to-date on both T-Rex's progress as well as mine.  I am pleased to report, I have gained back a little of my equilibrium.  For a while there my world was spinning out of control!  I totally relate to mothers of little children again.  I find myself eating because of stress and  I am once again fighting the desire to medicate myself with Dr. Pepper!

Some updates:

1.  Rex had a very bad week two weeks ago.  He was like a crazy dog!  It got so bad I finally called the vet to see if it could be food related.  They invited me to bring Rex in for an exam and we went as much for Rex as for me!  I was totally overwhelmed!

The Vet's findings and recommendations:
 - Turns out Rex had a urinary tract infection.  They put him on some medicine and he has been like a different puppy ever since.
-  Rex has very dry skin and they gave me some medicated shampoo to try to help relieve that.
-  Dr. Kara empowered me with some coaching and encouragement on potty and crate training
-  Dr. Kara also recommended that I get Rex enrolled in a Doggie Daycare a couple of days a week, to give him some socialization, give our other dog a break as his wrestling partner and personal chew toy and give me some breathing room.

Happily I can report that things have improved immensely.
I am still overwhelmed.
I still don't feel like I have a solid block of time to do much of anything with.
But, Rex is sweet and I am becoming a doting grandma!
This blog, at least for the next year or so, will chronicle The Good, The Bad and The Goofy times of life with T-Rex the Goldendoodle!

What changes are you experiencing this year?

Monday, June 6, 2011

In Loving Memory...

Charles Ammon Merrell



Charles Ammon Merrell (Chuck) left this world April 29, 2011 after an astounding three year battle with Pancreatic Cancer. Throughout this experience, he exhibited great courage and a never-failing sense of humor. He has been the rock and foundation of his family for decades. Using his keen vision for the truly important matters of life as well as the knack for humor that characterized his life, he displayed a remarkable ability to calm a crisis with his sunny attitude. Living with Chuck and associating with him was a joy to all who knew him.

Chuck was born Jan. 18, 1934, the eighth child and fifth son of Ernest Leroy Merrell and Verna May Moffett, in Virden, New Mexico. They moved across the Gila River to Duncan, Arizona when he was only a few months old, and he was raised there. He joined the Navy in 1952 and served a four year term of enlistment, serving on the aircraft carrier, USS Midway, as a radioman when she took her world cruise in 1954 and in 1955 when she was part of the 7th Fleet in the Western Pacific. He met Patricia Lee Porter in San Diego, California, and they were married in the Arizona, Mesa Temple, June 4, 1957. They raised their four children, Kathleen Louise (Dave) Boyer, Judith Lynne (Hal) Fitzgerald, Steven Charles (Jeanne) Merrell, and Kent David (Elizabeth) Merrell in Oceanside, California.

Chuck was a faithful member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. He honorably fulfilled many callings in the church, including temple worker in the Bountiful and San Diego Temples, and as Bishop of the Cave Junction, Oregon Ward. He loved to help others. You could always count on him to be there whenever and wherever there was a need. He was released from his last calling only a few days ago when it became apparent that he could no longer serve.

He is survived by his wife, Patricia, his four children, 22 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren, and two brothers, Evan (June) and David, as well as numerous nieces, nephews and cousins. He will be sorely missed here, but we know he gave a great report on his life and family when he arrived on the other side of the veil. Undoubtedly there was a wonderful family reunion as he re-joined his parents and other family members. We are comforted to know that we will all be re-united at a later date.

We appreciate all those who have been involved with caring for our husband and Dad. We wish to thank Dr. David Horsley, Dr. Jonathan Whisenant and Dr. Jane MacPherson for the loving care they have given Chuck during his illness. We also want to thank Debbie and the other aides of the Utah Hospice Specialists for their concern and the great service they gave.

Funeral services will be held 11 a.m. Thursday, May 5, 2011 in the Bountiful 16th Ward Chapel, 720 E. 550 N. Friends may visit Wed. from 6-8 p.m. at Lindquist’s Bountiful Mortuary, 727 N. 400 E. and Thurs. from 9:45-10:45 a.m. at the church prior to services. Interment Lakeview Memorial Park, Bountiful.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

The Taming of the Screw

I feel kind of like this egg.
It seems kind of ridiculous that I should feel this way.
I'm sure many people who may be observing me from "the outside" feel I am being ridiculous.
But, the feelings are real. The demands at work are like that screw tightening down against the egg. I am mentally and physically drained. I need to find an effective (and legal!) way to relieve the pressure.
If not I fear I will truly Go Cuckoo!! :)
Any ideas?

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

My Wanderlust


wanderlust (ˈwɒndəˌlʌst)


a great desire to travel and rove about

It started innocently enough.

My husband and I were planning a weekend away, nothing extravagant, somewhere within driving distance from our home. But, everywhere we considered did not work out for one reason or another. This, combined with a seed of hope regarding a long dreamed of trip to Italy in a couple of years, germinated into a case of wanderlust of monumental proportions!

Google became my accomplice. We spent countless hours together planning and dreaming of fabulous places across the globe just waiting to be explored. Money & Time, while an integral part of my plans, began to seem like much smaller obstacles under the influence of my wanderlust. Nothing seemed insurmountable in my quest to get anywhere besides “here”.

And then today, almost as quickly as it came, my wanderlust had subsided. I woke to the sun poking its head through the clouds; the birds singing their happy songs and the creek rushing down its path outside my bedroom window. Honestly, I’m certain the wanderlust is still there, temporarily satisfied by a good nights sleep and a beautiful spring day, but for now at least, I am content with my little spot on this big planet called earth.

Monday, February 7, 2011

From the Rooftops

I have an incredible urge to scream from a rooftop,

Do you think anyone would hear me? Do you think anyone would care?

I say I would like to do that, but in reality, I really would not want to because...
1. rooftops are high - I hate heights
2. rooftops in the winter are icy and I would be afraid of sliding off the roof
3. its probably cold on the roof

So, I am screaming (from the warmth of my living room) into cyberspace for the whole world to "hear"..




Sunday, January 23, 2011

On Leaving Facebook

Why does my decision to simplify my life and leave Facebook (sort of) make me feel like I am dying.

Scanning my list of "friends" I selected a few to send notes of "Please don't forget me...", dumping all my contact information into the note, hoping to remain friends without our beloved Facebook connection! Some dear friends, lost once and found again through Facebook, I don't want to lose again and so the idea of severing our Facebook relationship is troubling.

But, really, does merely being listed in my friend registry on Facebook mean we are friends, in the real sense of the word? In some ways we fool ourselves into thinking we are being friends, connected by status updates. Sure, it's nice to have found our long-lost friends, but what do we do with them once we find them; store them neatly in our friend list, and then what?

I have thought about making the break for a long time, but the idea of losing that thread of contact has kept me logging on - even though many of the people I am most worried about losing track of seldom even update their Facebook profiles, much less communicate with me!

I'm ready to start living once again in the real world. I will still have my Facebook account, so if you just can't communicate with me any other way, please send me a friend request and explain your plight - just be sure to include your email address too!

It is almost like I'm dying, and I guess in the magical realm of cyberdom I am. But, I'm counting on a life after death, we'll see how it goes!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Help Wanted ~ Seriously, people!

I am a 52 year old, happily married female (and mother of six awesome young adult children) looking for help in the following areas:

1. Fashion - I am looking to re-define my fashion style now that I am getting more seasoned and mature! Can someone help me learn how to use modern trends in subtle ways to keep me up-to-date? I don't want to be left behind, but I also do NOT want to look trendy/trashy (which is what frequently happens when a woman my age tries to adopt modern trends!) I want to look classy, not trashy or frumpy! I need help with color, styles and accessories (jewelry, shoes, etc).

2. Interior Decorating - I want to find relatively simple techniques to add flair to my surroundings. I can't do any major remodeling, but I want to learn about details I can add to a room to make it "pop"! I want to learn about color, design, patterns, texture, furniture, art and clever accessories I can use to update my home.

I have learned about all of this in the past, but I feel like I am in serious need of an update!
If you know of any blogs or websites that can help me in these areas, please leave me a message with the url.

Thank you!

Monday, January 17, 2011

Something Yummy Looking

I have a day off, thanks to MLK day. I studied the life of MLK once, and while I really don't respect the choices he made in his personal life, he did do a lot for human rights - plus, he provided me with a day off of work! Thank you MLK.

Today, in honor of MLK I am celebrating the human spirit and exploring blogs! My kids would say I'm stalking, but I figure if these people didn't want others to read their blogs they 1) would not write them or 2) they would make them private. Anyway.. I am constantly amazed at how creative and gifted so many people are and I'm happy they share their talents with others like me.
One blog I stumbled upon this morning is
Bubsies Boutique. It features "handmade gifts for your little one" which I don't have, but the reason I'm sharing the blog is for this delicious sounding recipe she recently posted.

Maybe it's because I'm hungry, but this looks Yummy!