Wednesday, May 26, 2010

I should be sewing!

After a full day of travel we finally arrived home late Monday evening. Once we were on the bus for the hour ride home from the airport (oh how I love the smell of Diesel Fuel when I've been up for almost 24 hours!) I phoned Vet Tech Girl with our ETA so that we could collect Wilbur.

It was like I was suddenly sucked into a time warp.

You see, years ago when my kids were little, and I was able to escape work, kids, husband, cleaning, laundry, etc... for even a couple of hours, I was always punished with 'bad reports'. So much so that it severely discouraged any kind of desire to do anything without a kid or a husband strapped to my side.

My stomach sank lower than I thought it could (even with Diesel fumes) as Vet Tech Girl unleashed a litany of complaints about Wilbur and as far as she was concerned we couldn't take him off her hands fast enough.

He pooped every two hours.

He pooped on the floor.

He pooped in Duncan's crate.

He pooped everywhere but where he was supposed to.

Duncan got so sick of his poopy crate that he finally growled at Wilbur.

I spent the remainder of the bus ride in agony.

When we finally got to the apartment I looked up and saw this scene peeking from Vet Tech Girl's apartment.

Duncan on the far left.

Miley the dachshund (Duncan's girlfriend) in the middle.

And my darling Wilbur is on the right.

Vet Tech Girl hurled our baby at us and with luggage thumping around our ankles (and landing on my feet way too many times) we all surged into the apartment as one. After giving Wilbur a thousand hugs while he gyrated his way around the apartment, we unpacked, and I started in on our mountain of laundry.

Finally, I poured a stiff drink and headed for a hot bath.

This was before I discovered that it was obvious Wilbur had received at least one bath in our tub. I was almost in tears by this time but I cleaned the damn thing, and then had a good long soak.

Yesterday involved a trip to the vet with both Wilbur and Chlorox.

But not Hans.

He was busy with 'work' and that better not have been internet poker I saw on his computer when I left the apartment with an excited pit bull on one side and box full of screaming cat on the other!

Wilbur got 'tummy medicine', flea, tick, and heart worm preventer, micro chipped, his last vaccine, pro-biotics (because of his raw diet), and tons of attention.

Chlorox got Kitty Cat Prozac for our 5 hour trip to the boat, her vaccination which is good for three years (and I hope I get my money's worth as she's 14!!), and a lot of attention.
I got the bill.

This evening involved my getting a free hair cut (a gift certificate from a cleaning customer) at a local 'chic' boutique, and talk about feeling like Ellie Mae Clampett! My outfit complete with matching purse was entirely too 'matchy matchy' and I really need to get out more! Although at my age I refuse to get a tattoo!

And tomorrow I have an optometrist appointment as I ran out of contacts last week!

I took this picture of Wilbur tonight.

I think he's growing!!!

This is exactly what I'm looking at, on my right, as I type this.

He has no shame!

I guess if I want to get any sewing done I'll have to make an appointment with my sewing machine!

Monday, May 24, 2010

Home Again Home Again Jiggety Jig...

...Home Again Home Again I Feel Like a Pig!!

We're currently in Toronto awaiting our flight home so I'm taking advantage of FREE WI FI to write this post. I'm also drinking my bourbon with a THOUSAND ICE CUBES and loving every second of it.

Anyway I could post tons of pictures of the Changing of the Guard, The Thames, Buckingham Palace (but not The Queen! That bitch new we were coming and left the country! I kid you not!), and on and on. But if you want to see those things I'm sure the internet has much better photos than I'll ever be able to take.

So I'll bore you with these.

Hans the Orator at the Speakers' Corner in Hyde Park.

The only audience besides me was a homeless/drunk man and I don't think either of us fully appreciated Hans' latest diatribe about our current state of affairs.

Greenwich Mean Time.

Hans actually had me going for a minute when he told me the line was six inches 'off'!

I hate it when he does that to me!

The weather this weekend was stupendous!!! Completely cloudless sunny skies!

In London!!!!!!

No kidding.

While Hans went to check on where our 'ghost tour' was to take place, I finally broke down and stuck one foot in the fountain in Trafalgar Square. Then next day I wore a bandage across my instep where the flipflop was just digging in!

A trip to London wouldn't be complete without a trip to Harrod's.
I saw thin cotton shirts for 250 pounds! And I'm sure they were cheap. I laughed at one ugly dress that I wouldn't pay ten bucks for at K-Mart and it was around 300 pounds!!

There was one clothing area that was 'appointment only' and I saw a very bored man sitting there waiting for his high maintenance wife/mistress.

We ended up with a piece of carrot cake and a brownie, and ate half of it during our walk through Hyde Park.

After walking for hours we stumbled upon the Princess Diana Memorial Fountain.

There's almost no signage and we were there forever before we figure it out!

If you really check this picture you can see that those bumps the kids are playing on are cement. Honestly! Cement with rushing water! I thought it looked horribly dangerous!

But once again I took advantage. This was day two of a lot of walking and my feet were killing me.

Hans joined in too.

Here's a pretty dog I saw in Hyde Park. When I asked the owner if it was a Pit Bull she said no.

She then said it was a Bull Mastiff and while the dog was friendly, the owner was not!

I'm still a little vague on the legality of some dog breeds in the UK and maybe she didn't want to be questioned!

Another dog near our hotel. I'm pretty sure it was a bully breed too.

I didn't ask!

Just up the block from our hotel was a very nice pub. We ate there at least three times.

This was Sunday (our last day) and we were so tired we never even bothered going back into London.

This is the burger that Hans had at the pub.

Double meat burger with cheese, sausage, and two eggs!!!! Along with chips!

This is why we really need to get home!! I never cook like this at the apartment.

Breakfast yesterday morning in our room.

The last of the Harrod's cakes, and coffee.

I see the Jack Daniels bottle made it into the picture but I saved it for later.

I finally got a picture of me in my Burda dress. It really did turn out nice and I hope I get to wear it again soon before I outgrow it!!

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Communicating whilst one is away

How on earth did people travel abroad before the advent of cell phones or laptops.

Honest to God, we've been emailed, texted, and called ever since we left home, and only a few were actually necessary or relevant. I myself warned my kids that they were only allowed to call (or text) us in the event of an emergency. Emails were ok but they also had to understand I might not get them for a day or so.

This is what's gone on so far this trip.

An email from Vet Tech Girl (who's caring for Wilbur): Wilbur threw up. He's probably excited about playing with Duncan. I'll clean it up.

An email from Baby Girl: Evi is very sick and at the hospital. So far the bill is $400.00. (Note: Baby Girl spells her cat's name Evi after Evgeny Malkin, a hockey player. I call the cat Evvy or Evelyn just to piss Baby Girl off). Hans wants to know what the hell kind of services cost $400.00. I tell him not to ask.

I zip off a quick email to Vet Tech Girl: Hans was talking to Nasty Neighbor the morning we were leaving and he warned us that he has poison all over his property because of raccoons. He also said he had to have his dog put to sleep because too many people in the neighborhood have gotten dogs (you know he meant us!) and his dog couldn't handle the stress!

Vet Tech Girl emails back that Wilbur is fine, Neighbor is an asshole, and she's sure that her roommate's dog Molly (who is a spoiled ankle biting screamer) is the one that upset poor Butterscotch the now dead dog! Also Duncan and Miley (Duncan's squeeze, a pretty little daschund) love Wilbur's big beef bone. They've left bone chips all over the place. She will clean it up.

I email Vet Tech Girl and warn her that Wilbur is only allowed to chew the beef bone on his pad.

Vet Tech Girl replies: He keeps it on the pad but Duncan and Miley don't. I'll clean up it up.

Baby Girl emails that her old boyfriend/stalker is going to put new brakes, rotors, wiper blades, and a headlight on our car in order to help it pass inspection, and am I willing to pay for it.

My answer: Only if he knows what he's doing and why on earth are you talking to him???

Last Friday Hans received two texts at the same time. One said, "We're at Evi's" and the next one said, "Evi died this morning."
Now here is a bit of a coincidence. You see, Hans' Aunt Eva goes by a nickname pronounced as Ayfee but is spelled Evi. Baby Girl's cat's name is spelled Evi so poor Hans almost had to sit down when Baby Girl deemed the death of Evi the Cat as Text worthy as opposed to Email worthy and sent her message at the same time Hans' Baby Brother sent his text as he wanted us to know he'd arrived at Aunt Evi's house.

I'm the only one who found this to be morbidly funny.

I did get a follow up email that an autopsy on Evi the Cat is being performed. I told Hans not to worry when he asked if autopsies are free.

A recent email from Vet Tech Girl went like this: What the hell have you been feeding Wilbur? He has the shits! I told you only 10% of his diet should be liver and you've got it at about 50%!!! I'll clean up the mess. BTW his beef bone is really starting to stink!! Signed, your loving daughter.

From me to Vet Tech Girl: Dear rotten ungrateful daughter, Wilbur never had the shits until you started watching him! Put the bone outside.

From Vet Tech Girl: Oops I have no idea how Wilbur got a hold of one of your sandals but I don't think anyone will notice the heel. I threw it in your bedroom. Sorry.

Me to Vet Tech Girl: I woke up this morning here in Germany and could have sworn Chlorox was walking on me (sometimes I get these premonitions). Would you please make sure she's still alive.

Vet Tech Girl to me: She's been screaming her head off, she's fine.

Vet Tech Girl again: Wilbur is a naughty boy. He thinks he's allowed to see what's on the counters. BTW, I've been diagnosed as bipolar and listed you as my emergency contact.

Me to Vet Tech Girl: When the hell did Wilbur get tall enough to counter surf?

Hans was concerned about the bipolar business. What did they call it before they had a name for it, he wanted to know. They called it being a bitch, was my reply and I'll deal with that nonsense when I get home.

I have to say though that this email is my favorite. It had no text, just this picture. That's Duncan, Wilbur, and the little lady on the bottom is Duncan's woman Miley. I only wish she hadn't used her flash as they all look possessed!

Years ago my best friend went on vacation to Aruba with her boyfriend. She told her kids that under no circumstances were they to call her. Even if they broke a leg, "It would be set before I could even get home anyway, SO DON'T YOU DARE CALL!"
I remember being very shocked and thought she was being callous but I have to say after this trip I'm in total agreement with her!!!

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

A quick update on our Germany/London trip. And my dress

It's been a very busy and hectic week and hasn't been made any easier with the constant fear of whether the volcanic cloud will decide to wreak her power over us.

We were lucky to be able to fly into Heathrow from Hamburg, Germany yesterday as the airports had been shut down the day before! It was a bit unsettling to see a normally busy place so very quiet.

Anyway we are currently in Leeds (Hans has business here) and will leave for London (by train) tomorrow so we can be totally irritating tourists for three days!

Once again I didn't account for the cooler weather that happens over here and I didn't pack enough warm clothes. Saturday's wedding started with a boat ride to the church and I had nothing dressy to put over my 'afternoon' dress. Luckily when we went to pick up Hans' tux we stumbled upon a used clothing store and just as I was ready to give up I found something that would work. Unfortunately it cost 50 euro!! Ouch. I don't even want to see my credit card bill.

It's a shame you can't see the dress (I didn't make it but I did get it on sale and it was a lot cheaper than the 'used' jacket).

My used jacket! Thank God we found it because it really was a chilly and windy day.

The red carpet treatment at the reception that evening.

This is the dress I made.

Hans in his tux. The store in Hamburg only had one shirt in his size.

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

The Castaway

My head is pounding! I crammed a weeks worth of living into two days, and we have to be up at 5:30 AM tomorrow in order to get to the airport.
And while it's my own fault I still want sympathy!

Today I lined and hemmed my silk dress. And no one, NO ONE!!! will ever be permitted to see the interior. It's that bad!

The sleeves on my little black jacket needed to be hemmed but they were already short, so I added a black bias tape edge to them and it actually made them look kind of smart. Let's hope people will see the smartness of the sleeve edges and not notice the hideous job I did in easing the sleeves into place. I'm still not entirely sure, but I may have put them in backwards!

I made Wilbur a batch of food but I ran short and hope desperately that Vet Tech Girl will carry on in our absence.

I checked out 6 books at the library but only have room for 4 in my luggage.

I made a quick (and expensive) trip to Petco and when what you need is in a locked display case, look out!!! it's not gonna be cheap!

Then onto the shoe store. When I finished my silk dress I threw on my favorite patent leather sandals and the damn back strap on one of them wouldn't stay up!! Thank God I found a cute pair of black satin heels on the clearance rack! I get the clearance rack while Wilbur gets the locked vault stuff!!! It would appear that he is the high maintenance member of this family.

Then came time to pack and I didn't get started till after dinner. Passports, electrical plug adaptors, cords for all of our electronic devices, does my new flat iron work in Europe? Are we checking baggage or not? What the hell is the weather going to be like over there? OMG, I only have one set of contact lenses left and I just ran out of saline solution! I forgot to renew my vehicle registration, it's due at the end of the month, and I had to jump online and renew it!! Baby Girl is using my car and now we need to get it inspected ad nauseum, and she's in the middle of finals!!
In the middle of all this Hans told me he needed my phone to update it for use in Europe. I didn't snarl. I didn't!!!!!!!!!

While I was running back and forth in my attempt to pack, I nearly had a heart attack when I saw this:

Wilbur had jumped into my suitcase.

He dug around and made a nice little nest.

If I thought for one second I could get away with it...

Monday, May 10, 2010

A finished evening gown!!!!!!!

Today was a beautiful day. The sky was clear and blue, the air cool, the sun warm.

At least that's what I've been told.

Unfortunately I never set foot outside the apartment (except for Wilbur's early morning pee) until this evening when I finally unchained myself from the sewing machine.

This is because I'm the queen of procrastinators and even though I hate being that way, I think I'm going to have to resign myself to it.

Hemming this bias cut dress was very time consuming. I hand basted around the entire bottom edge (to hold it in place) and then pressed it.

I measured an inch up on the turned under hem, and added another row of basting. This was on the turned under part only! Not on the actual dress.

The second line of basting was added so the hem could be eased before hemming.

After easing the hem I applied some iron on hem tape at the very edge of the turned up hem. My mother wasn't sure if she approved of 'iron on' hem tape but I assured her it would be on the hem allowance only!

I then sewed the hem in place by hand.

You can see the border print showing in the bottom corner here. Since this dress was cut on the bias, one lower corner ended up with this darker print.

That's why I added the border print to the opposite side of the dress on the bodice in the photo above this one.

I have no idea if this makes sense but I like the asymmetrical look to it.

When I finished hemming the dress, I dug out a jacket pattern (I can't remember which one it is and I'm too tired right now to look) and made this.

Just in case it's chilly next weekend I'll at least have my arms covered.

We leave for Europe Wednesday morning.

I still have to pack.

I don't even know if I have shoes for some of my outfits!

Vet Tech Girl is going to watch Wilbur for us and I have to grind up a two week batch of chicken meat, bones, livers, and egg shells.

I just realized I have nothing to read on this trip so I have to hit the library.

My silk cocktail dress is missing a lining and needs to be hemmed.

I have no one to blame but myself!

All evening long we've noticed that something smells funky!

Hans thought it was Wilbur's bedding, but I just washed it, so I think the stink is Wilbur.

He smells like an anchovy!

I kid you not! What's that all about?

Smelly or not, at least he looks debonair.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

It's official, I'm a ROAR Squad member!

Normally I'm not a 'joiner' (although there was that time down in Mt. Airy, North Carolina when I was at Mayberry Days and became part of a fan club. Baby Girl got confused and told her teachers that I joined a cult! I kid you not!), but I so wanted to jump on the ROAR Squad band wagon, and I did!

Shauna over at Fido and Wino has taken on a huge task.

She's the creator of the Roar Squad, and her dream is to put puppy mills out of business and make adopting pets from shelters a cool thing to do!!!

If you want to feel all kinds of warm fuzzies, you really should go check her out. And if you know anyone who's looking for a pet of any kind, send them to her blog so they can see for themselves how adopting a 'cast away' could possibly be one of the most rewarding decisions they ever make!

And even if you aren't in the market for a pet, you should read her blog anyway as she's very witty and fun.

We went to my mom's today for Mother's Day and gave her the (used to be full) hanging flower basket that Wilbur the Future Florist ever so kindly pruned. We had a very nice afternoon and even managed to stay for dinner.

Now here's something I never expected to see. Chlorox and Wilbur, not only in the same room together, but on the futon together!! It's kind of like seeing the lion lie down with the lamb.

Or even more unlikely, how about Mahmoud Ahmadinejad (or Mr. Imadinnerjacket, to us) and Isaac Mizrahi sitting down to discuss fashion together!

Now wouldn't that be something!!!!!!!

Friday, May 7, 2010

Wilbur Jekyll and Wilbur Hyde

Last night I decided to dig out my Puff Purse Pattern.
As you can see it didn't turn out nearly as nice as it should have but it'll do.

I underlined the very thin and shifty (sounds kind of criminal doesn't it?) silk with some duck cloth. I also added interfacing to the body, but not the sides.

I didn't glue the frame to the bag. For one thing, my glue went bad, and I also knew I'd get it all over the place. Luckily this frame has holes in it for sewing so that's what I did.

In my infinite wisdom (insert sarcasm here), I decided to add a strap to convert it into a wristlet.

I didn't have any swivel hardware on hand so I just sewed the 1/2 inch strap into a seam. It's too clunky and does NOT look right, but too late now. At least I won't have to clutch it all evening long.

Here you can see how very petite it is!

Just the right size for a pretty kitty.

Chlorox is concerned that the intensity of the green in the purse might take away from the green in her eyes.

And the Countess will not be upstaged!

Today started out wonderfully.

Hans nor I had to work so I suggested a sojourn that included finding my mother a nice hanging basket for Mother's Day, and taking Wilbur to a boat launching sight on the river to see if he likes water.

The trip to the market was very successful and I bought the biggest, fullest (and most expensive), hanging moss basket full of petunias and verbena that I've ever seen. I could barely carry it out of the stalls and I actually called out "wide load" (to some people's amusement) while attempting to do so.

Hans and Wilbur waited outside very patiently for me as there was no room for a rambunctious pit bull (or a Big German Man for that matter) in the narrow isles of the mini greenhouse.

The aromas from nearby eateries convinced us to stop for lunch so we found a restaurant with outside seating and got a pizza. And for the record, let me say that until Wilbur came into our lives we have never received so much attention.

People came out of the woodwork to see him, pet him, exclaim over him, and just adore him. We heard stories of people who've adopted pitties and pitty mixes, and will never own another breed of dog in their life. The street musicians (whom I'd tipped earlier) stopped playing their instruments and begged to pet him. And of course one of them has a pitty/red bone mix (abandoned female breeder rescue) that he loves to death.

An older Indian gentleman was very enamored of Wilbur, whom he declared to be an almost twin to his nine year old pitty that he too, got from a shelter. He looked him over from head to tail and noted that while Wilbur is missing the white tip to his tail that would mark him as a pure pit bull, he still has the classic underbite that's a pit bull trait. He remarked a couple of times that he'd take Wilbur in an instant if he could.

We then headed off to the boat launch and Wilbur took to the water in a very good way. People feed ducks at this location so there was a lot of popcorn floating on the water. I only wish I'd had my camera with me to film him clumsily attempting to 'paw' the popcorn closer to him in order to eat it.

And then we got home, I went to the grocery store, and all hell broke loose.

Hans met me at the door with a myriad of complaints of how naughty Wilbur had been while I was gone, and then said I wouldn't be at all happy with what had occurred on the deck.

That's when I screamed, "Oh my God, my plant!" and ran for the back door.

I was greeted with complete carnage and I was furious (and not with the dog)!

Thank God Hans stopped Wilbur before he did too much damage because Wilbur was enthusiastically pruning the petunia to nothing when he was caught.

It looks a bit thinner but it'll be ok.

I took Wilbur out onto the deck later with his new peanut butter bone and he was a sweetie! He's always good for me.

I'm feeling a very deja vu moment about this situation.

Why is it that you can't leave men alone with the kids while you're gone?

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Hemming and Hawing

I believe I mentioned in my last post that I'm running out of sewing time for our trip to Europe next week. So instead of hemming the evening gown I made that's been lying around for about a month, I went and started another dress.

This silk fabric, that I bought in Paris a couple of years ago, has been really bothering me. It's because I wasn't confident enough to cut into it, and I finally said the hell with it!

Actually it's almost a crime that someone like me should be allowed to have such lovely fabric.

I know the do's and don't's of silk but it was still a bitch to work with. I tried so hard to keep everything on the straight and narrow but this stuff shifted all over the place!!!

Anyway I thought it would be best to use it on something that's worked for me in the past. So I remade my Burda 07-2007-120.

It still needs to be hemmed (and lined) but here it is.

And let me tell you it's being held together by a wing and a prayer! I ripped the bodice apart three times (and it's a simple bodice). It just goes back to the silk thing!

I made Hans help me with the shoulder strap adjustment and he asked, "Don't you still have to hem your other dress?"

"Yeah? So...?" from me.

"Well why would you start another dress if you're not done with the first one?"

"Because I have a bug up my butt, that's why!" (And it has nothing to do with perimenopause or PMS!).

"Well, we're leaving on Wednesday, do you suppose that bug will be gone by then?"

"Probably not, so don't worry about it!"

And so it goes.

Yesterday I was worried about Wilbur. He was so quiet, and spent more time than I felt necessary, sleeping.

Well he more than made up for it today! He turned somersaults when let out of his crate this morning, and even after two walks he was full of beans (and toots!!! GAG!!!) into the evening.

This picture doesn't do him justice, but his whole hind end is up against the back of the futon while his head is on the seat.

But get this; tonight at bed time, I asked Hans if he'd please give the little bugger one last potty break before we go to bed.

I heard a commotion and then Hans came back into the room in a very meek manner and said, "He doesn't want to go out," and then Wilbur crawled up on the futon beside me and started snoring.

"Who the hell wears the pants in this house anyway?" I shouted. "You or the dog?"

I then pushed Wilbur off the futon, dragged him down the steps, and marched his ass up the street. He then took a huge healthy pee, while I stood beside him, in my pajamas, and watched.

I made sure to steer him away from the used syringe (I should take a picture!) that's lying right outside our door, and I wasn't in the mood to worry about drive by shootings. Earlier this evening I'd watched a big scary man with a big scary (yet majestic) pit bull walk past, and tried not to worry about them either.

Wilbur is now dreaming (and kicking) beside me and Hans has acknowledged that I wear the pants in this family!

Somehow this doesn't seem right!

Monday, May 3, 2010

The clock is ticking!!!

I can't believe the family wedding is almost here! We leave for Germany next Wednesday and I still have to hem my dress!

But at least it appears to be acceptable and all I have to do is hem it.

I went out to my parents' house last weekend so my mother could pin it up for me. That poor woman had to lie on the floor for I bet a half hour getting it to just the right length.

Luckily Wilbur was a good boy and spent hours chewing on Kissy Pooh's collection of marrow bones. Kissy Pooh, on the other hand, was a very ungracious hostess and shunned any attempts on his part to become friends.

She sulked upstairs, downstairs, and on the porch. And finally the time came when Wilbur, with tail wagging madly, tried to play with Kissie Pooh and she lunged at him in a very nasty way and sent him running with his tail between his legs.

I swear I saw my dad smirk but I'll let it go.

This is Wilbur after spending hours chewing on the big juicy bone we bought for him on Sunday.

He was beyond exhausted.

Actually he's just about the most relaxed dog I've ever met. He's sleeping beside me right now, and all I have to do is pick up his head, give him tons of big smoochy kisses, and he never wakes up!!!

But he's very needy and doesn't want us out of his sight. Luckily while we're gone, Vet Tech Girl will be taking care of him and he adores her.

I'll try not to worry too much while we're gone.

Chlorox is coming along much better than I expected. She's made several forays from the bedroom to the kitchen and thank God Wilbur, while curious, gives her her space. I spent hours this morning elbow deep, grinding raw chicken thighs (with bones), livers, and hearts and gizzards. Wilbur is on a raw diet and while it's actually very cheap it's a bit time consuming. Anyway Chlorox made several appearances all the while sneering at Wilbur, who would really like nothing more than a good cuddle with her!!!

Here is Chlorox on our bed, and it's the only place Wilbur is not allowed.

I call this shot: Camouflage.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Give a Dog a Bone (as long as the lady gets some fabric)

Wilbur arrived home early this morning from his 'Take your step-brother to work day'. Vet Tech Girl took him and Duncan to work with her last night for her 12 hour overnight shift at the vet clinic.

And what a time he had! He and Duncan shared a very large cage that allowed them to wrestle for hours, and then both of them (whether they wanted it or not!!) got a bath.

He was obviously tired so I didn't feel too horribly guilty for putting him in his crate so we could head out to the market district in search of a beef bone for him.

A couple of hundred bucks later we arrived home with a bone for Wilbur.

So how does a bone cost so much?

Actually the bone itself (and it's a nice meaty beef marrow bone covered in fat, and sinew, and blood) cost $4.26.

The rest of our money was spent on all kinds of wonderfully necessary things, such as, a beautiful amethyst pendant purchased from a Russian jeweler for me (to make up for the knee pads that I got for my 50th birthday!), a Penguins T-shirt for Hans, anchovy stuffed olives for me, a deep fried fish sandwich and beer for lunch, and a piece of fabric from an OMG!!!!!!! fabric store that's not a JoAnn's!.

I tried so hard not to go in, I really did. I told Hans that I didn't need or want anymore fabric! We're moving onto the boat in June and how much sense would that make?

So we went in.

"Boy, they're not stupid", Hans noted, upon spying the Sports Illustrated magazines and a comfy chair situated ever so invitingly just inside the door. I told him to 'sit' and thank God he's as smart as Wilbur, because he did, and after assuring him I wouldn't buy a thing I set off to explore.

What a store!!!!!! I've never seen such a selection of fabrics and everyone there is so stinking friendly (they will never get a job at JoAnn's!). They have books, notions, and tons of fun covered buttons. And if there's something you want that they don't have (I don't know how that's possible) just tell them and they will do their best to get it for you. The layout of the store is almost hypnotizing, it's that nice. I was on the second floor when one of the ladies pointed out some Sunbrella fabric to me.

Isn't this cool? I never knew Sunbrella had prints.

I bought a one yard piece of 60 inch wide fabric for $15.00.

I'm going to make a big tote/beach bag from it.

Actually I should be making cushions etc... but I don't have enough time!

Here it is at its full size along with an exhausted pit bull.

Wilbur spent an hour and a half chewing and gnawing on his juicy beef bone. He would sometimes stop mid-chew to pant like an idiot before starting to chew anew. Since then he's been pretty much comatose, so much so that Chlorox walked into the room, sniffed him, and then left.

He never budged.

And I'm so thankful that we've found a new use for the Potty Patch.

It makes a lovely $79.00 place mat.

"Didn't Duncan pee on that yesterday?" Hans observed.

"Don't ask." I replied.