The Puppy Pokey Repost

Weeders, I know you have been checking this blog every single day for a Poppy report.  How do I know this?  you ask, as well you might.  Well, never mind, I just do.  (May I suggest you get a life of some sort?  Just a suggestion.)

So wait no longer–here is the update:

As you all know, Poppy has been attending Middle School.  With some pride, may I report that she is taking some accelerated classes too?  Oh yes, our Poppy is, indeed, the ‘smartest child  canine’ in the class….(oh, alright, Weeders, I’m prejudiced a little bit….)

“Oh my,” I thought.  Well, before she gets too big an ego, we must make sure she understands that the world is a big place for a young Poodlette, and she may not be the smartest canine in the world.  A bit of humility would benefit her education.

So, of course, Poppy has been going to the local Dog Park for several weeks now.  Several TIMES a week. Oh, alright…it is actually whenever she tells TMWLH she wants to go.  Which is about every single day.

And do you think she’s learned her lesson of humility?


No way, Jose.  (And Jose happens to be TMWLH’s name, only in English.  Although sometimes we say “Jose” but not like that, not like “Josie”  No, it’s got that accent over the ‘e’ as is written–and spoken–in Spanish.  Which he is not.  He is Irish.  100%.  You see, on his Mother’s side of the family is Irish, completely, and on his Father’s side of the family, well, they’re all Irish as well.  Which makes him all Irish.  Unless there was some other nationality thrown into the mix there, which they aren’t telling.  I have no way to know.  Genealogy is such an interesting pursuit, but I haven’t taken advantage of the internets for such, although others have……Oh wait…….I’m digressing here…..besides, who cares?  It is what it is.)

So anyway, (as someone I knew always said…transitioning from one topic to the next)

It turns out The Spicy Royal Red is a meet and greet, glad-handing pawing (and sniffing) little girl and loves nothing better than to make her way around the ENTIRE dog park, meeting and greeting not only the canines who are there, but every single one of the people who are there.

And they all adore her.  At least, that’s what she reports.

A bit of romping and running is also involved, along with some growling, but generally not from The Spicy Royal Red.  Beneath her dignity, she reports.

So much for teaching her a lesson.

But back to the report:

Poppy has not missed a single class and also does ‘extra credit’ classes during the week.  I regret to report there ARE some dropouts in the class.  One appears to be her good friend, Dahlia, about whom Poppy is very distressed.  Dahlia was a good dancer, as was previously reported, and Poppy likes to dance.  This dancing is also, evidently, a portion of the curriculum, but I can’t be certain.  Not all participate.

At any rate, we attended class Thursday night with Poppy.  Immediately leaving our side, she greeted all the other children and some of the adults, including the teacher, Miss Marisa, and her Assistant of whom she is particularly fond.  And her Assistant is particularly fond of Poppy, too, evidently.

It turns out that she (the Assistant) is the one who has been instructing Poppy in the more advanced levels of Canine education and Poppy is working on some accelerated courses.

Basic education includes:  Get out of the kennel nicely and, when instructed, enter the kennel; Sit; Stay; Down; walk following one’s person nicely; and of paramount importance:  Leave it!

A week ago, “Leave It!” was introduced as a main lesson and Poppy was to practice with her family during the week.  So, I dutifully did as we were instructed:  Take a handful of treats, drop one on the floor whilst Miss Poppy was watching, seated, and I stated, “Leave it!” and cover it with my foot.  Miss Poppy was to wait and as soon as her attention withdrew from the treat on the floor, I was supposed to hand her a different treat from my hand and pick up the one on the floor.  (This resulted in a number of crumbly treats on the floor, in case you wish to try it with your own Pup.  Note:  just cover the treat with your foot, do not squish it.)

We practiced in class.  After the first two ‘drops’ by me, Poppy understood there would be a treat forthcoming from my hand, not from the floor, and so she would dutifully sit there and wait for it to be handed to her.  There was not even a need to cover the dropped treat.  No way was she going after it and having to fight with my foot to get it.  She is, after all, refined, and does not believe in arguing with her parents.  Telling them what to do when necessary, yes.  But arguing, no.  There are better ways to do things she informed me.

We practiced a bit at home with different treats.  Miss Poppy said, under her breath, “Oh my, really?  You could just hand me the treat after you drop the first one.  I know I’m getting it anyway and this is such a bother!”  

But then she realized that if she stole say,  a napkin, off the table, and I called out, “Leave it!” that a treat would result.  And so this is the game we’ve been playing this past week:  she steals a napkin, runs to the living room with it, waits to hear, “Leave it!”, then runs back into the kitchen, sans napkin, to obtain her treat.  And I play ‘retriever’ and obtain said item from the living room floor.  Sort of reverse fetch.  She told me this was a very GOOD way to obtain treats anytime she wished.  Which is often.

So this gives you an idea of why Poppy is often told how intelligent she is.  I have another word for it, but I won’t go into that now.

So, last night, we arrived at class and Miss Poppy immediately went into a frolicking dance with her newest dance partner appropriately named Jazz.  Jazz and Poppy are the best of friends, and Jazz does know how to dance very well as evidenced by the photographs to follow.

A bit of dancing, the meet and greet over, it was time for instruction:  repeating the “Leave It” (Poppy was selected, of course, to demonstrate to the rest) and practicing; learning “Down” which Poppy thought was rather ridiculous since she’d been doing that for months, and then a combination of the two.  Quite boring actually.  So, of course, Poppy added in, “Crawl” which amused the others to no end.

Then there is this business of “Wait.”  Well, ‘wait’ is fine if there is a REASON to wait.  But if not, why does One have to sit patiently at a doorway with One’s person when there is no reason TO sit and wait?  One knows to go through a doorway when One’s person takes a step, for heaven’s sake, to just follow politely behind.  Why does One need to LOOK AT One’s person for ‘permission’ anyway?  This seems absurd.

So Poppy sat and sat and sat and I stood and stood and stood…..just to walk through a doorway.  Finally, Miss Marisa said, “Well, she ISN’T going to look at you for permission, and she’s waited so very nicely for SO LONG, so just go on through.”

No, she isn’t going to look at anyone for permission to do anything, actually.  She never has.  She figures out by her own self what is proper and what is not.

For example, this “Sit and look at One’s Person before One’s Person will Put the Food bowl down” business is ridiculous.  Miss Poppy ALWAYS sits and waits.  And waits.  And waits.  But look at One’s Person to request One’s Person place the food down?  Heaven’s NO!  When the food bowl is put down, she waits some more during which time I can only assume she is saying Grace or having a Moment of Silence in Gratitude or something along those lines.  I mean, she is VERY polite.  And she sits when dining, as well.  I seriously question if any of her other classmates do the same.

It is also preposterous to think Miss Poppy will allow her People to decide when she will eat.  I mean, really?  No!  She tells us when she wishes to eat.  By banging the Venetian blinds against the windows.  When One is hungry, One is hungry.  Period.  It is up to the Authorities to provide food.  That’s the LEAST they can do.  (Miss Marisa was horrified at this. “Why,” she asked, “does Poppy need you?  She gets beauty parlor appointments, and gets her food on demand….who is in charge here?”  Well, she is.  Obviously.  But she does like her living arrangements, evidently, not having left home to go abroad or anything like that.  Which is to say, left to her own devices, she doesn’t run off in the neighborhood, but rather comes to the front door to be let back inside.  Otherwise, I’m not sure why she ‘needs’ us.  It’s a mutually agreeable living arrangement, I suppose.)

And so, Poppy will be graduating shortly and continue her education with on-going coursework.  We will, of course, report.

And the Assistant stated, once again at the end of class, “Poppy is SO SMART!”  And Poppy, being Poppy, did a little dance on her back legs, pirouetting and balancing in the air on those two back legs.   And politely accepted her treat.

This is what she was saying,

“You put your mouth on an ear”

“You put your mouth on a neck…..”

“You put your mouth on a tail….and you shake it all to heck!”

“You do the Puppy Pokey and you run yourself around,”

“And, that’s what it’s all about!”  PUPPY POKEY!

At the end of this little ditty, Jazz and Poppy took turns hugging each other, like this:

And you can see how happy Poppy is with her dancing partner (below).  (The Assistant Trainer is also very happy for both of them.)

Poppy is smiling as Jazz gives her a hug.




Repost The Graduate!


‘”Wasn’t that a movie or somethin’ a while back?” Jabber* inquired.

Well, yes, but this isn’t about a movie. It’s real life! And Poppy just completed Middle School (aka Puppy School) last night. Here is the certificate to prove it:

Miss Marisa, the Head Trainer at the Academy, first went over the various course topics which Poppy had studied, and then TMWLH took her through each to show that she had, indeed, learned all her subjects well.

Poppy and Miss Marisa above. Poppy is about to demonstrate to Miss Marisa that she understands “Wait!” at the doorway.

Of particular pride was the “Leave It!” subject in which she excelled.

“Uhhhh, no she din’t….” Jabber* interjected here, “No, she din’t. She ate TMWLH’s glasses the night before. That’s not “Leave it!” that’s “Eat it!”

Well, in CLASS she mastered the command. Miss Marisa dropped treats all over the floor with the command to “Leave It!” and Poppy did. Finally frustrated at ALL THOSE TREATS lying about, but unable to actually get them. she lay down on the floor. Then she got praise. And only ONE treat from Miss Marisa. Hardly seemed fair, she reported later.

But then lots of this classroom study seemed unfair to Poppy. However, the treats make it worthwhile to at least pretend for the hour long-instruction. Miss Marisa ALWAYS has treats she hands out to the good dogs! who obey. At home, it’s a different story. TMWLH never has treats in his pockets and Mom generally doesn’t either. Ergo, why bother to do what One is told? she reasons. On the other hand, (or is it IN the other hand?), if One is told there will be treats forthcoming, well, then, that’s a different matter entirely.

(It’s clear that Poppy has been studying up on Oxanna’s Manual again. The manual, mentioned previously here on this blog and the much revered instruction book for ALL Poodlettes, clearly states that a Poodlette is perfectly capable of thinking for Herself. Following commands is based upon the answer to the question, “What is in it for Moi?”)

A brief intermission in the testing was ordered so that the children canines might play for a bit. All kids need some recess, after all. Poppy was delighted that Jazz had come for finals. They are the best-est of friends!

Piper was also in attendance. Piper has a difficult time being QUIET! Piper much prefers to be ON somebody than PLAYING with somebodies.

Below, Piper is sitting standing on TMWLH’s lap.

Despite Piper’s lack of involvement with much of the rest of the class, She still managed to receive her diplomas:

Jazz, too, received her diplomas and was a proud graduate of Greymont Puppy School:

Jazz received the honor of being named “Life of The Party” for the class! And Poppy? Well, Poppy received this award:


Yes, Poppy graduated with HIGH HONORS. We are very proud of her. Future plans include returning to Day School on Friday and consulting with her Head Trainer on what high school and pre-college courses she might take next. Again, while considering other options such as dance, vocals, gymnastics, education and even perhaps psychology, Poppy is leaning towards geriatric services as a major. We shall report.


More ‘leftovers’

As Weeders may note, I’ve been in the process of using up freezer and pantry items this past week.  This in preparation for–well, I don’t know persactly, but a girl needs her space.  And so does her food supply…..

To that end, a friend delivered two gallons of freshly picked blueberries the other day and they are in the process of being frozen, slowly, one cookie sheet at a time and then double packaged in zip-locks for the oncoming winter.  Of course, we’ll be eating some of them, but two gallons is, well, a gazillion blueberries for two people to consume all at once.  The extra freezer space has already come in handy.

The Royal Red is not interested in blueberries.  Kong, on the other hand, stuffed with a Greenie and peanut butter can keep her entertained for hours.

Which is why I have a moment to actually write this post, you see.  There is method to my madness.  Then again, sometimes I just feel nerdy wordy.

So, here we go–another leftovers meal:

Black beans and rice

I am NOT, I repeat NOT, a fan of either rice or beans as a generalization.  Nope, not my kind of meat and potatoes meal at all.  However, once in a while it is necessary to have some variety in one’s menu and this was one of those “one-ces”.

“Why?” Jabber suddenly appeared at the mention of food–of any sort–….

Because I said so, Jabber.  Go away.

So, there I was, 5 p.m. and no dinner ready.  And no idea what to fix.  VOILA! thought I….sometimes I do think “Voila!” but not too often–anyway, I had some packages of andouille sausage in the freezer and they really should be used up.

Hmmm, beans and rice usually go well with andouille sausage!  So, I did what any normal person would do (not saying I’m exactly ‘normal’ here, but you know…) anyway, sure enough, I had both black beans and rice.  As well as a can of corn!  Yea!  And, as a bonus, the black bean can had a recipe on it, so I read through it.

I can do that, I thought, and began….I mean, this isn’t rocket science and frankly, one doesn’t need a recipe for this!  And, of course, I didn’t do it exactly as the recipe dictated.  I had to make up my own…..

Chop up 1 cup of onion and 1/2 cup green pepper more or less and put in a pan with olive oil–heat them up and cook about 5 minutes–medium to low heat.  Stir around now and again.

Throw in some garlic–I have some in the jar already minced–maybe a tablespoon or so.  Your kitchen is going to smell delicious!  Now, add about 1 teaspoon of Oregano.

Add the black beans.  Stir.

Now is the time to add maybe 3/4 cups of water or chicken broth or vegetable broth–whatever you have. Now add chopped andouille sausage (I cut into 1 inch chunks) and sauté all of this for a while.

Set all this aside while you cook up about 2 to 3 cups of white rice.  (Or, if you’re smart, you had this rice going while you were chopping and sautéing. I was not, sadly, that smart.)

I put the rice in a large bowl along with a can of corn

and the already cooked vegetables and sausage.   Taste it.  Decide if you want more salt or seasoning.  Maybe throw in a can of Rotel for a bit more  spice (I wish that I had).  Add whatever you’d like for a bit more zip or zing if you think it’s warranted.  Oh.  Yes.  I forgot to say I added about 1 pound of rotisserie chicken to the mix–just decided that was a good use for it.

Frankly, I wish I’d added the Rotel, too, but I didn’t.  Ours was a bit dry and a bit of zip would have been an added plus.  Before baking, I could have added a bit more chicken stock as well.

Okay, now bake what you’re going to have for supper–maybe 25 minutes at 350 degrees or until it’s good and hot.  Make up some  corn muffins and bake those to go with the black beans and rice.  Add a salad.  There is supper.

You will have a HUGE batch on your hands.  Call your friends, there is going to be plenty of food.

Wrap up what you’re not going to eat in foil, then place in plastic freezer bags and….well so much for saving the freezer space, eh?, freeze for another night’s supper.  Or, you know, you could add a container of this to soup base–and you’d have a delicious and filling soup.

(The Royal Red is STILL chewing her Kong toy!  Yea!)

Attack of the Machines, A Leftover Food Idea, and other trivial pursuits

No, no, not the game Trivial Pursuit–just my life, the past week or two which has been focused on trivial pursuits more or less.  Except, of course, trivial things can fast become major…’s part of the on-going war on the home front, you see…..

It went like this:

TV guy fixed the TV connection (refer to previous post), causing the electricity to stop running to outlets, the vacuum system and the lights under the house; Electrician fixed the electricity issue, causing the computer to not work (Mouse no longer ‘recognized’ by computer); IT computer guy fixed the computer, but the ‘Mouse’ had, evidently overnight, talked to the coffee pot and it would not make coffee.  I fixed the coffee pot (called the company for advice), and then the toilet started leaking.  The Plumber came and fixed the toilet.  We are still waiting for the Appliance Repairman to come back to install parts in the refrigerator water/ice dispenser system which started all this mess to begin with.

We are on ‘red’ alert…..

Meanwhile, Poppy decided to eat the top of a safety razor I’d stupidly thrown into the bathroom trash.  She is not allowed in the bathroom, but we made a mistake and left a door open one day in the midst of a repairman being here to repair something (take your choice from the above list!)   A week of anxiety, watching her (and anything she excreted!) and it never appeared.  I have looked everywhere.  And I do mean everywhere, Weeders!  This was two weeks ago, so evidently it’s done her no harm or she’s hidden it somewhere in the house–a secret place of her own?  She’s had no ill-effects from said razor, so perhaps??  I don’t know.  She has also ingested portions of fringe off of rugs, eaten a hole in said rugs (two of them, small holes, but holes none-the-less), the stuffing out of an old chair I was taking apart to reupholster (this was months ago), dishwasher machine soap tablet (only a part of it, I found the remains this morning), pens, reading glasses (two so far), and assorted paper napkins with which she absconds and runs madly away from us, chewing as fast as she can and swallowing.  We can not turn our backs in the kitchen–she grabs and runs with knives, spoons, forks, plastic bags, and the occasional food particle she can reach.  It’s quite a circus…..

So far, she’s survived despite her own best efforts.  The vet asked, quizzically, “Doesn’t this dog have any chew toys?”  ARE YOU KIDDING ME?  Bones, several (the safe kind), a “Kong” which is stuffed with a chewy treat and peanut butter once a day and keeps her busy for an hour or two, she is taken to school twice a week to play (run down her energy level), she is walked two or three times a day, she takes a ride in the car every single day to go somewhere or another to entertain her, she has company several times a week–smaller people with which to play and chase–a swimming pool of her own outside which gets filled and emptied every time she uses it, a fenced-in backyard (where she won’t stay alone).  I spend time ‘training’ her, which she enjoys for the ‘treats’ rewards, not to mention the attention.  Her food and water bowls are never empty.  If they are, she tells us by banging the blinds next to them in the kitchen and we run to refill them.

Poppy with a dog ‘cookie’ from the pet store. Of course she went!

Does this sound like a dog who is ignored?  No, I don’t think so either.

She’s just, well, very very curious……..about everything evidently!  Chew toys?  Good grief!  WE are the toys!

Yes, well, this is why we love her. Can’t help ourselves.

All is quiet on the western front at the moment.  (Even the Poodlette, thank you very much.)  So, of course, I decided to cook something for supper.  I’d briefly seen an article about zucchini.  I had two zucchini in the fridge along with some leftover sauce, cheese

leftover sauce and cheese. Put the sauce in the pan with the hamburger and rinse out with water, pouring the water into the pan as well. Let it simmer until thickened.

and a pound of uncooked hamburger, so this is what I made for supper last night:

Cook ground beef with some chopped onion and peppers (the top off a pepper I was going to stuff)

I seasoned the hamburger with a bit of homemade taco seasoning mix (you can use packaged mix if you prefer):

Then add the leftover spaghetti sauce (as shown above).  Simmer until the sauce reduces and is somewhat thickened.

Cut zucchini in half lengthwise, remove seeds (with a spoon) and placed a teaspoon or two of cheese in the bottom.  (I also used a squash and a large pepper).

Spoon some cheese sauce in bottom of vegetables, add hamburger mixture and top with more cheese sauce if you have some left.  If not, leave plain or add a different type of cheese for a topping.  (Any kind of cheese will work with this recipe–remember, I’m using up leftovers.)

Bake at 350 for about 45 minutes–check to see if the zucchini are done to your liking, the filling is already cooked.

To go with the zucchini ‘boats’, I made some Tater tots on the waffle iron  (just spray with a bit of oil, place the Tater tots on the griddle and cook until done).

Leftover Tater Tots cooked on a waffle iron

This is an easy method to cook them and quick, but I can’t say that they turned out very pretty.  The Tater tots were not completely thawed when I placed them in the waffle iron.  They might have formed a waffle shape if they had been.  Tasted good, though.

They cooked up fine, but presentation left something to be desired.

A salad completed the meal……


Zucchini Boats with ‘hash browns’

This was filling and tasty.  We have some leftovers for another night as well.

Nap time

When One is a Poodlette and it’s a Sunday afternoon, a nap is very much in order!

So many choices of where to nap!  The floor, the rug, the Poodlette bed, one of the two kennels One has, or…..of course, the most preferred position of all:

This is the preferred position:  “Spread Eagle” on One’s back; paws up in the air, bent so the fur cuffs are displayed prominently; ear jauntily draped, snoozing happily with One’s Person above for protection.

Poppy Models

At 8 1/2 months of age, Poppy is growing into her looks and like all teen Poodlettes, concerned about keeping up appearances.  The weather has been very muggy and hot and she’s spent several days at Kindergarten meaning that it was time to refresh her outfit for school.

To her great relief, she seems to be very popular with the other kids canines and comes home from school each time with an A+ except for one day….she only got an A.  She was sorely disappointed, but she explained she had been having an ‘off day’ what with the weather and all.

So for the coming month or so, she’s selected again a short-cut velveteen Copper-colored coat and she just CAN’T give up the fur cuffs, so those, too.  But she did ask for a blunt haircut around her ears–a sort of Poodlette ‘bob‘ look which is attractive on her.  Her only accessory is a polka-dot scarf with assorted colored polka-dots.  This because, as she explained, “It’s much too hot for bows in my hair and besides the other kids just try to steal them from me!”

Below are some photographs which she allowed me to snap.  She now weighs over 50 pounds and as such, could be considered a ‘plus size’ model in the Poodlette world.   (I really think she is pretty good at modeling.  But she’s told me many times that her career choice is going to be in the geriatric care field.  I don’t know why.)

Note the ‘bangs”?  She wanted to try them out with the ‘bob.’

  Fur cuffs, nails au natural

Poppy turns her head as she’s seen other models do….”fetching’ look!

A quick snapshot of her lovely coat and she was off.  Other things to do, she said…..

The Cracker Caper

“See?  This is what happens ’round here when you leave Poppy in charge.  She’s just not grown up ‘nuf to be in charge, I tell you.  She’s just NOT!” Jabber exclaimed, exasperated at what had happened.

I just wanted a couple hours out to meet my friend for a long-delayed dinner to catch up.  So, with TMWLH’s approval, I left about 4:15 to drive over to the restaurant.  Miss Poppy had ‘recharged her batteries’ by this time, having had a full night and day to rest up after her first kindergarten attendance the day before.  It had been unusually quiet around the house, with Miss Poppy dozing all day.  She was absolutely exhausted from her day-long adventure, too tired to get into trouble.

Before I left, however, I noticed she was being playful…..and I warned TMWLH to ‘watch her’!

One of Miss Poppy’s favorite things to do is to reach items up on the counters in the kitchen, especially lately, a plastic zip lock bag holding some Ritz crackers.  She’d gotten a taste of said crackers some time ago when she successfully knocked down a TIN (in which I’d neatly stacked them), tossing the crackers out of the tin and onto the floor.  Thankfully, Daughter was here and we’d quickly scooped them up, thrown them out and rescued the few remaining in the tin before Miss Poppy managed to gobble too many.

She liked them.  (We don’t give her human food, so the only way she has a ‘chance’ is to steal a taste here and there, which she will do if we aren’t careful.)

That was a couple of weeks ago.

Since then, I’d decided to place some additional remaining crackers in a plastic zip-lock bag and put them far away from Poppy’s reach on the back corner of the counter.

I thought.

Poppy had been eyeing those crackers, waiting for the opportunity.  Which came last evening whilst yours truly was not at home.

TMWLH decided to make himself something to snack and the crackers and some leftover spread (in the refrigerator) seemed appealing.  He made the snack, but forgot about putting the crackers way back on the counter…..and left them at paw’s reach….his first mistake.

What’s that?

No, no, not ever.  He’s made mistakes before; he just doesn’t admit to them.  This time there was no denying it.

Bam!  She grabbed them.  But since she couldn’t open the bag (no opposable thumbs, don’t you know), she simply decided to chew holes in the bag to get to the crackers.  And she did…..chew holes in the bag…..

but just then…..

TMWLH heard her.

Running back into the kitchen, he yelled, ‘DROP IT!”

And Miss Poppy, sensing that her prize was about to be taken away, quickly ran into the family room, wildly shaking the now-holey bag, filled with cracker CRUMBS.  TMWLH chased after her, but she then ran evasion tactics, back into the kitchen, into the living room, under the dining room table and finally relinquished said bag.  Her job, now, was to clean up the crumbs–and they were EVERYWHERE!

Mission accomplished, she declared to herself.

TMWLH surveyed the mess.  While he went to get the vacuum cleaner, Poppy helpfully ‘vacuumed’ what crumbs she could find–the largest ones first, of course–and tracked more small crumbs around the area as she lapped up.

Then came the great vacuum battle which ensues every single time the vacuum is brought out.  TMWLH valiantly vacuumed all over whilst Poppy alternated between running, lapping up crumbs, and barking at him.

Finally, he finished.  He turned around and looked into the living room.

Miss Poppy, needing to relieve herself, had decided she’d waited long enough and was, at that moment, making her ‘deposit’ on the living room rug.

TMWLH, having lost the battle with his puppy, was in a state when I arrived home shortly thereafter.

Poppy, however, had enjoyed the adventure and was very glad to see me.

We are sending her to kindergarten for the entire day today.

Poppy Goes to Kindergarten

Yes, I know Poppy is a dog.  As in raising children, however, things have changed in the past 25 years since we got our first poodle and went on Standard time.  We’ve been on Standard time for mostly 25 years now, and, well, time marches on.  Or rather, poodles march on and people try to keep up.

As I informed you a week or so ago, Poppy had selected her new clothes to go to school.

 She thought it was to be boarding school, but her parents had a change of heart.  She is, after all, just 7 months old, so it was decided she would go to kindergarten, a more appropriate age-level classroom.  (Yes, she is still wearing the same outfit.  It is very hard to get her to change.)

Of course, she had to have her physical before going, so she visited her friend, the vet, on Friday and decided she’d stay overnight there for a couple of nights.  This was good experience.  (And the house was full of new people for the weekend, interfering with her nap times.)

On Tuesday, Poppy hopped into the back seat of the car while The Authorities drove her to her new school.  She and the Authorities paid a visit to inspect the school, Greymont Kennels in Fairview, Tn, but most of the time she had to wait outside for Mother Superior  (No No!  This is NOT a Catholic school) Authority to double check that all was appropriate and clean and well, you KNOW how Mothers are.  Anyway, it was approved, and Poppy was invited to come spend the following day for a ‘personality evaluation.’

I am not kidding.

So, on Wednesday morning, bright and early (school starts at 8 a.m.), Mother Authority and Poppy, in the backseat because, as we all know, children under a certain weight can not ride in the front seat, set off for the school.  Poppy was very excited.  She recognized it immediately and could not wait–COULD NOT WAIT I TELL YOU!!!!–to get her collar and leash off and go with the nice lady to join the other children canines in the back room.  They all congregated there before they went out, as a group, to the playground.

Mother Authority was asked to return between 3 and 4 and, at that time, a trainer would give Mother the report card for Poppy’s personality and it would be determined whether or not she could attend.

She passed!  I don’t know if she was happier or Mother was happier, or the school was happier, but she passed.

Poppy was a little bit nervous, but warmed up during the afternoon to the other kids  puppies and played and worked well with them.  (Always nice for a Mother to hear, don’t you know.)

She took her nap in the kennel when the rest of the group did, enjoyed the various activities and learning experiences.  It was determined that she LOVES LOVES LOVES humans.  Dogs, mostly too, but all humans.  This is likely because she considers herself a human.

Mother was told that such classroom activities develop social skills for canines with one another and Poppy needed to learn dog language.

Mother was perplexed to hear this.  I mean, she does speak Poodleese, but didn’t know she should speak dog as well.  It is a foreign language to her.

“Obviously,” said the trainer.

Poppy doesn’t speak dog very well, but is learning.  She will attend Tuesdays and Thursdays for a few weeks and an evaluation will be done at the end of the period to see if she is ready to move along to the next level.  Meanwhile, Poppy will receive a report card at the end of every single day she attends so that Mother Authority can keep track of her progress.  Or lack thereof.

One of the big concerns for Mother Authority is what to pack for snacks and lunch.  Do the other kids have peanut allergies?  Peanut butter is Poppy’s favorite treat.  Are they allowed to have treats?  Should her name be attached to her coat and all her belongings?

Another benefit to this school is that Poppy can take the bus if she wants to.  Or her parents wish her to.  For $10, the bus will come and pick her up and for another $10 bring her home from school.  It is a nice option to have, although I don’t believe Poppy is quite ready for this yet.  However, in a pinch, it’s a good option.  She would like a window seat.  Of course.

The Authorities are already planning for Poppy’s future education.  After elementary, junior and high school, she will need to go to college.  Tuition has increased as we all know.  There is great concern about funding said education, but The Authorities have assured Poppy that if she studies hard, does well, they will help her through college.

While she has not yet decided upon her career, it seems likely she will go into the geriatric health care field.

Didn’t I tell you things have changed?



Poppy is going to Finishing School

Mother said, ‘Well, dear Poppy, it is time we made plans for your finishing.  I have made reservations for you to go July 18 for a two week period, here in Nashville, but it will be ‘abroad’ and not at home.”

And so it has begun–the preparations.  First, and most importantly, a proper wardrobe had to be selected.  This morning, Poppy went to select her everyday attire.  She selected a closely-cut copper/red velveteen-like coat with real fur cuffs and pink accessories.

She did have her nails done, but prefers them ‘au natural’ especially for this adventure.

Of most concern, of course, is Rush….the sororiety rush!  Oh my, she so hopes she will be a popular girl at finishing school!

REAL fur cuffs

Pink accessories.

So as a little practice, The Spicy Royal Red Paprika will spend two overnights with her friends at the vet kennels.  A houseful of company will be visiting here, and she agreed it was a good time to spend her first nights away from home.

But she is so excited about her upcoming finishing education!

A Hunting We Did Go….

“A Hunting We Did Go, A Hunting We Did Go, Hi HO the Merry-O, A Hunting We Did Go!” Jabberwocky happily reminisced about all the fun things we saw today.  “Not to mention the treasures we got, too!” Jabber said, but she didn’t mention.

So I will….

Yes, Weeders–it was Saturday and two of our favorite community sales were held today.  We had to decide which one to choose… is always a difficult decision.  But since Sosew lived in one community, we decided to go there first.  Besides, she agreed to come with us if we would pick her up.  So we did.

Girlfriend found an area rug for under $10 (I don’t recall the exact amount); Thumper found a fun sign which said, “Kiss The Cat” and while I can’t explain exactly why anybodies would want to do such a thing, she knew.  (Thumper being a Bunny of the highest quality generally knows about these things.)

SOSew found two pairs of Coach tennis shoes which Jabber REALLY wanted, but they didn’t fit Jabber.  They did fit Sosew….Jabber still hasn’t gotten over it.  They were so cute!  Vanna found a Chico’s shirt which she promptly put on.


Oh yes, she HAD on a shirt before, but she liked the new one so much she just changed shirts.  The reason, she said, was that her first shirt was sleeveless and she wanted to cover up her ‘wings’.  I informed her that we ALL had ‘wings’ and we should really be proud of them as they showed we were angels.   Somehow this didn’t seem to make Vanna any more pleased.  The shirt did, however.

Cupcake was in a bossy mood today, too, telling everyone that she, and only she, would sit in the back seat.  She planted her water container there in the holder and got quite miffed if anyone else tried to take her spot.  Cupcake found some books which looked unread (but how does one KNOW they were unread I ask you) and some lovely pillows on which to lie while reading said books, unread or not.

And Jabber!  Well, Jabber found some wonderful treasures which began with:

Yes, Weeders, a gen-u-ine silver birdcage on a stand!  For $5.  It’s perfect in the mint garden.

“You don’t HAVE a bird!” Jabber declared, “but on the other hand, it looks big enough for TMWLH…if he could get through the tiny little door.”

Ignore Jabber.  That was meant as a Joke, Jabber.  We all know that a dog house is what a man is placed in should he misbehave.  I don’t have one of those, but I DO have a kennel….

But I digress….

What did you ask?  Oh….

Well, yes, it’s a mint garden.  I do have some pots with herbs scattered in there, but the mint has taken over and I’ve let it, so I just call it my mint garden.  Got a problem with that?  If you do, then YOU come pull up all that excess mint.  Besides, it does make a nice flavoring for iced tea.  When I think of it….

But I digress!

More about our travels:

We stopped at a house where we’d had great finds last year.  This year the sale was for the benefit of Happy Tails, a no-kill animal shelter.  And for the Brownies, too, evidently.  At this sale, the Brownies were selling cookies:

Aren’t they a cute bunch of little Brownies? (No, no!  The Brownies were not available for adoption–the animals at Happy Tails were available for adoption.  PAY ATTENTION!)

And guess what?  Cupcake was a Brownie and said her goal at that age was to grow up to be a Girl Scout!  Girlfriend, when she saw this photo, said, “Well!  You’d think she’d have BEEN a Girl Scout by now!”  But no, she is a Cupcake instead.

Yep, there is Cupcake still wanting to be a Brownie or a Girl Scout or something……

The Brownies were taking contributions for Happy Tails, selling cookies, and handing out goodie bags (for free!) for shoppers’ DOGS!  Poppy was so thrilled when I came home and told her I’d found some things for her.

  This bag contained six treats such as:


And then, Jabber found some other treasures including:

These were $2 total.  Two weeks ago, Jabber found another few of these, and then last week one glass, and this week four more.  It seems that people all decide to dispose of their old items–the SAME items–at about the same time.  Perfectly lovely summer glasses for fun.  And Jabber just loves to have fun.  And pretty things.  And to drink wine….   Well, yes, that too.

Three panels @ $10.  New.

Let me explain–Houdini made a portion of the drapes disappear in the office.

This she did a couple of months ago, whilst teething, by eating off one corner and the weight in said corner of said drapery.  Since then, the drapes have been gathered up and held above Houdini’s mouth grasp, but they really needed replacing.  (And I suppose I shouldn’t tell you how Houdini does her magic tricks, but in this case, we figured it out.)

We retired to Sosew’s for a lovely cup of coffee and bagels.

“What do you mean you ‘retired’?” Jabber  indignantly stated, “You retired YEARS ago!”

Yes, yes.  I did.  What I meant was, Sosew hosted a little gathering at her house.  We’d all had ENOUGH treasure hunting for the day.  Besides, we’d already had to do a drop off earlier at Sosew’s as we’d filled up the van after only ONE BLOCK of shopping.  It was also very hot by  10:30 or so and getting warmer.

At the gathering, right in the middle of our very deep conversations about washing machines, Thumper put her hands up in the air, making circles with them as she is wont to do, and interrupted us for a word from our sponsor with a commercial.  Thumper is wonderful at impromptu commercials.  As we all know.  And which I DID get on video.  However, I regret to inform you that my very life has been threatened should I post such videos on this blog, so I won’t.

However, I will say that after everyone got home, we received this photo and a message which said, “This is what I was talking about!” via smartphone from Thumper:

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